'Law will not benefit poor'

Cosatu says a law aimed at protecting consumers from unscrupulous businesses and "get-rich-quick schemes", which is at present being discussed in parliament , will not benefit the poor.

Cosatu says a law aimed at protecting consumers from unscrupulous businesses and "get-rich-quick schemes", which is at present being discussed in parliament , will not benefit the poor.

Prakashnee Govender of Cosatu's parliamentary office told MPs that the Consumer Protection Bill had "limited value" because of the high rates of poverty.

"Poor people often use the informal economy, where regulatory mechanisms proposed by this bill are unlikely to reach them," he said.

He said Cosatu wanted the bill to also cover state enterprises as service providers and not only businesses. The bill also makes provision for commissions and tribunals where consumers can ask for action against service providers they feel have wronged them. - Anna Majavu

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