Which way now, Cosatu

WE ARE relieved that Cosatu has not taken too long to see the hypocrisy of condemning other ministers for their expensive choice of cars and deciding that there was nothing wrong when it was their left-leaning comrade in the pounds seat.

It is brave of Cosatu to accept that their initial position of accepting the reasoning behind Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande buying a R1,1million car was inconsistent with the character of a working class outfit. So brave that we will ignore that they could not get themselves to call Nzimande by name.

The union federation now wants the ministers who bought R1m-plus cars to return them and replace them with cheaper models such as those bought by Finance Minister Pravin Gordham whose two cars cost as much as Nzimande's BMW.

Being honest with their alliance partners might turn out to be the comradely thing for them to do.

Speaking of honesty, we need to stop sloganeering and face the reality that conspicuous consumption is totally incongruent with leftist politics.

It is utterly dishonest to want to couch the terms of the debate to mean that those who decry such tendencies do so because they equate being a socialist with being poor. We will not even waste time and ink on those who want to make this a black or white government thing.

As Zwelinzima Vavi said, the ministers' expensive tastes send an unfortunate message to the poor that ours is an uncaring government despite all the pre-election rhetoric.