Taking COSATU Today Forward, 10 September 2021

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Norman Mampane

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Sep 10, 2021, 9:25:59 AMSep 10
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COSATU TODAY

#COSATU urges workers and their workers to join progressive trade unions

#UnionizeNow

Taking COSATU Today Forward

‘Whoever sides with the revolutionary people in deed as well as in word is a revolutionary in the full sense’-Maoo

 

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Our side of the story

Friday, 10 September 2021


Deepen the Back to Basics Campaign, Consolidate the Struggle for the NDR and Advance the Struggle for Socialism’

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We shall overcome!

Contents                      

o   Workers Parliament: Back to Basics!

  • NUM Highveld Region to embark on a total shutdown at ESKOM and calls for the removal of the power utility CEO Andre De Ryter 

o   South Africa

  • COSATU welcomes National Assembly's passage of the Compensation of Injury on Duty Amendment Bill
  • COSATU welcomes Parliament's adoption of the 3 Gender Based Violence Bills to Parliament
  • COSATU welcomes National Assembly's adoption of Financial Sector Laws Amendment Bill
  • COSATU Mpumalanga condemns the unprovoked shootings of peaceful demonstrators in Matsamo Boarder staging picket against the Swaziland absolute monarch

o   International-Workers’ Solidarity!

Ø  IndustriALL Global Union condemns arrest of KCTU president YANG Kyeung-soo and demands his immediate release

Workers’ Parliament-Back2Basics

NUM Highveld Region to embark on a total shutdown at ESKOM and calls for the removal of the power utility CEO Andre De Ryter 

Keagile Pholoba, NUM Highveld Region Deputy Regional Secretary,09 September 2021

The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) in the Highveld Region held an urgent Eskom Regional Shopsteward Council today to discuss the concerns of Eskom insulting its employees by unilaterally implementing a 1.5% salary increment and changing the conditions of service.

 

Eskom CEO is violating the South African Constitution, Eskom recognition agreement and other regulations. He is undermining organised labour/ unions by communicating directly with our members on Central Bargaining Forum (CBF) issues.

 

The council has resolved for the removal of the Eskom Golden Boy (CEO), Andre de Ryter, as he has not been held accountable for the 18 billion Eskom loss and the Medupi Power Station incident due to his skin colour.

The Golden Boy went as far as lying to the public that employees were paid R129 million in production bonus when in reality some got as little as R3.00 in production bonus. He is the worst-performing Eskom CEO since its establishment in 1923

 

The council has also resolved that No Salary increases, No voting in the coming local elections. The council also supported the NUM NEC decision to march to Luthuli House about the crises at Eskom.

South Africa

COSATU welcomes National Assembly's passage of the Compensation of Injury on Duty Amendment Bill

Matthew Parks, COSATU Parliamentary Coordinator, 10 September 2021

The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) welcomes the National Assembly’s adoption of the Compensation of Injury on Duty Amendment Bill (COIDA Bill).

 The Federation endorses the progressive provisions of the COIDA Bill. This bill is long overdue and will extend cover and relief to millions of workers, in particular women. 

COSATU’s support is based upon the following critical interventions included in the COIDA Bill:

  • Domestic workers will now be covered, benefiting almost a million largely women workers who had been unconstitutionally excluded.
  • An expanded definition of workers’ dependents and beneficiaries to include their spouse(s), children, siblings, parents, and grandparents, thus reflecting South Africa’s cultural norms.
  • Diseases and post-traumatic stress disorder resulting from the workplace will now be included, providing relief for millions of workers in the mining, security, and other sectors, and women.
  • Introducing a no-fault rule, to replace practices in the past that have been abused to deny relief to workers.
  • Providing for stiff penalties for non-compliant employers.
  • Providing incentives for compliant employers.
  • Empowering labour inspectors to ensure compliance by employers.
  • Allowing courts to place caps on the exorbitant fees claimed by lawyers.
  • Extending the time frame for submitting claims from 1 to 3 years; and
  • Clearly defining the roles and responsibilities of employers, contractors, and sub-contractors; thus protecting millions of workers who otherwise fall through the cracks.

Whilst welcoming the adoption of this progressive Bill by the National Assembly, the Federation is disappointed it took so many years and unnecessary delays by government to reach this stage. 

The National Council of Provinces should now commence its work to ensure that it can adopt the COIDA Bill by the end of 2021.

 It is critical that it come into effect in the beginning of 2022.  Domestic workers have waited long enough for their rights to a safe working environment to be recognised and enshrined into law. 

It will provide relief and protection to millions of workers across all sectors of the economy.

Issued by COSATU

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COSATU welcomes Parliament's adoption of the 3 Gender Based Violence Bills to Parliament

Matthew Parks, COSATU Parliamentary Coordinator, 10 September 2021

The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) welcomes Parliament's adoption of the 3 Gender Based Violence (GBV) Bills to Parliament.

These three progressive bills (Sexual Offences; Domestic Violence; and Criminal and Related Matters Amendment Bills) are part of the package of interventions committed to by the President in 2019. 

They are a welcome step in the right direction to capacitate the state to tackle the scourge of violence affecting women, children, the elderly and persons with disabilities, in particular sexual offences.

 Key provisions proposed in the Bills include:

  • Tightening incest prohibitions;
  • Extensive definitions of sexual intimidation;
  • The inclusion of all convicted sex offenders in the National Register;
  • Providing the Register to be publicly accessible;
  • Prohibiting the employment of sex offenders in professions where vulnerable persons may be at risk;
  • Requiring persons aware of offences being committed against children to report them to the police;
  • Providing for intermediaries and audiovisual court processes for vulnerable complainants;
  • Tightening protection orders, bail, sentencing and parole provisions for sex offenders;
  • Removing weapons from the accused; &
  • Empowering the police to arrest and enter premises without warrants if needed.

These Bills will further empower the state to deal with GBV.  Parliament must now move with speed to send them to the President for his assent and governments enactment.

However, they will remain meaningless if government continues to reduce budgetary allocations to Legal Aid for victims, the courts and the South African Police Service. 

Equally government must ensure that all law enforcement, judicial, health, social development and education officials are properly trained to enforce them. 

Public education programmes are critical if we are to stem the onslaught against women, children, the elderly and persons with disabilities.

 Issued by COSATU

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COSATU welcomes National Assembly's adoption of Financial Sector Laws Amendment Bill

Matthew Parks, COSATU Parliamentary Coordinator, 10 September 2021

COSATU welcomes National Assembly's adoption of Financial Sector Laws Amendment Bill. 

This is a critical, progressive, and long overdue amendment of our financial sector legislation. It will protect depositors and workers, government, the financial sector, and the economy from reckless behaviour in the banking sector. 

When banks collapse it is workers, pensioners, and depositors whose monies are lost.  It is bank workers who are retrenched and see their pensions stolen.  It is the state which is forced to spend scarce resources propping up banks.   

 South Africa has felt this pain when the African Bank hovered on the verge of collapse.  Pensioners and workers are still reeling from the loss of their hard-earned savings when VBS was looted into the ground by shameless management, politicians, and their friends. 

 This Bill will further empower the Reserve Bank and government to hold banks accountable and to intervene when needed. 

It will require the establishment of depositor insurance funds under the supervision of the Reserve Bank to ensure that workers, pensioners, and other depositors are provided with some cover.  This will help protect the public fiscus from having to bail out banks when resources are badly overstretched.

 When collapsed banks’ assets are disposed of it needs to be pensioners, the unemployed and workers who are first in line to receive the compensation due to them.  It is immoral for secured lenders, e.g., other banks and commercial lenders to be first to receive compensation.  Workers and pensioners cannot afford for their little payments to be delayed for months and years.  Neither can they afford to receive whatever funds remain once banks and other lenders have had their fill.

 The National Council of Provinces needs to begin its work and ensure Parliament concludes adopting this progressive Bill by the of 2021 so that it can come into effect in the beginning of 2022.

Issued by COSATU

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COSATU Mpumalanga condemns the unprovoked shootings of peaceful demonstrators in Matsamo Boarder staging picket against the Swaziland absolute monarch

Thabo Mokoena, COSATU Mpumalanga Provincial Secretary, 10 September 2021

The Congress of South African Trade Union in Mpumalanga condemns with contempt the senseless shooting which led to the injury of 20 protestors who have embarked on a peaceful demonstration to pledge solidarity with the nation of eSwatini.

The incident took place at Matsamo Border while the protestors were chanting and singing to demonstrate and express their displeasure with the brutality meted by the Swaziland Monarch to its own people.

According to our records 20 workers sustained injuries and others lost their valuables during the scuffle.

As the federation we note with disgust and shock the barbaric and senseless shooting meted against our members by the law enforcement agencies, who are supposed to protect our nation.

We therefore call for full investigation and prosecution of the alleged perpetrators and that full might of the law to prevail.

We are also calling upon the MEC of Community Safety, Security and Liaison together with the provincial commissioners to go deeper to the roots of this atrocities such that those who are implicated are brought to book.

All South African citizens have the right to freedom of association and the right to demonstrate as enshrined by our democratic constitution.

No stone should be left unturned during the investigation of this chatalanse act.

Issued by: COSATU Mpumalanga

International-Solidarity

IndustriALL Global Union condemns arrest of KCTU president YANG Kyeung-soo and demands his immediate release

4 September, 2021

IndustriALL Global Union is outraged over the arrest of KCTU president YANG Kyeung-soo in the early hours of 2 September. The arrest came after Korean police raided the KCTU headquarters, dragging out YANG Kyeung-soo.

An arrest warrant had been issued 20 days earlier by the Seoul Central District Court for organizing a rally, allegedly violating the Criminal Act provisions against general obstruction of traffic, the Assembly and Demonstration Act and the Act on Infectious Disease Control and Prevention.

IndustriALL Global Union vehemently condemns the arrest and considers it an outrageous, unacceptable attack on fundamental workers’ rights to freedom of association and peaceful assembly.

IndustriALL joins the International Trade Union Confederation in labelling the arrest warrant “wrong and disproportionate”, as participants observed social distancing rules and necessary precautions to prevent the spread of Covid-19, including wearing of masks and temperature checks.

IndustriALL Global Union demands that YANG Kyeung-soo is immediately released and that the Korean government stop using the pandemic as an excuse to crack down on the democratic union movement.

IndustriALL expresses its solidarity with KCTU.

__________________________

Norman Mampane (Shopsteward Editor)

Congress of South African Trade Unions

110 Jorissen Cnr Simmonds Street, Braamfontein, 2017

P.O.Box 1019, Johannesburg, 2000, South Africa

Tel: +27 11 339-4911 Direct line: 010 219-1348

 

 

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