Cape Town Games for Older Persons is a gimmick - Cosatu

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*Cosatu spends next to nothing on skills development (but a fortune on all else)

Cosatu condemned the Cape Town Games for Older Persons held at the Green Point Athletics Track on Thursday as “a gimmick to placate senior citizens”.

“It’s an insult to senior citizens given the exorbitant amounts of money that the DA spends on the needs of the wealthy in the City of Cape Town,” the trade union said.

“We measure our society by what we do for the most vulnerable. If we used that test then we are not doing very well in Cape Town, because we do all we can for the rich, but very little for the poorer communities who have suffered under Apartheid.”

Cosatu spends little on skills development and workers’ issues

This statement comes only days after Cosatu was fingered for spending a mere R7849 on skills development in 2014, but R5-million in legal fees, mostly to fight its own divisive battles.

According to the union’s own financial reports, it spent only R58 359 on workers’ issues.

The report also says that more than R4-million was spent on vehicles, mostly for national office bearers.

About R424 000 was spent on housing allowances for office bearers. “Top leaders” received R3500 a month for “household needs” with water, rates and electricity costing R1800 on top of that.

Cosatu provides free accommodation for senior officials.

The union spent R4.5-million on political activities, chiefly on election campaigns to support the ANC and the SACP.

The union spent R30.2-million on staff in 2014 while overhead expenditure amounted to R28.8-million.

Cosatu events for senior citizens

The union says it has been holding events for senior citizen every month for the last 10 years.

“Senior citizens need to be celebrated with more than just an annual gimmick,” says Cosatu in a press statement. “Give seniors the freedom of the City one day a month, where they can go free of charge wherever they want.”

Cosatu wants the Mayor to support its events to give seniors a monthly activity at minimal cost.

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