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don't be personal - manuel

By Anna Majavu | Oct 07, 2009 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

TREVOR Manuel has called on Cosatu to "depersonalise" their objections to his Green Paper on National Strategic Planning.

The Minister of National Planning in the Presidency released his proposed policy document last month, sparking outrage from Cosatu.

Cosatu accused Manuel of setting himself up as a "super-minister" with power over Economic Development Minister Ebrahim Patel.

Manuel was quizzed by MPs about the "turf war" in a meeting of the ad hoc committee on the Green Paper on Strategic National Planning in Parliament yesterday.

Manuel said: "Take Trevor Manuel out of the equation. Let's depersonalise this thing in its entirety.

"The document says we can't presume we can sit in the Presidency and be all-knowing and take responsibility for what other line functions do. There is a need for long-term planning. Somebody's got to take responsibility. The detail and implementation comes from elsewhere. We are going to do this. It's getting this right that will provide us with the success".

IFP MP Narend Singh said the only question was whether planning would contribute to better use of state resources. He urged MPs to ignore media reports about turf wars between Patel and Manuel. "We must not allow planning to become a swear word," he said.

But National Education Health and Allied Workers Union general secretary Fikile Majola said the union wanted Manuel's Green Paper to be negotiated in Nedlac before Cabinet adopts it.

In his Green Paper, Manuel rubbishes Nedlac, the tripartite forum which issues strike notices and where government, business and labour negotiate new laws.

"Each social sector has tended to pursue narrow interests, often at the expense of longer-term objectives," Manuel wrote.

The statement apparently angered Cosatu because they saw Patel as a very effective Nedlac labour convenor prior to his appointment as minister of economic development in May.


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