NUMSA congratulates FAWU for deciding to leave COSATU

Union says new federation must seek the full implementation of the Freedom Charter

Numsa welcomes Fawu decision to leave Cosatu

The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) congratulates the Food and Allied Workers Union (Fawu) on its historic decision, taken at its 75th national congress at Bela Bela on 24 August 2016, to disaffiliate from the Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu).

Numsa further welcomes the assurance made by General-Secretary Katishi Masemola that “the decision taken is irreversible, [and] it will be undergoing implementation as of now.”

Fawu has consistently fought against Cosatu’s expulsion of Numsa and the dismissal of Zwelinzima Vavi. Numsa praised Fawu’s bold attempts at the two Cosatu Congresses in 2015 to reverse those actions.

Fawu has also played a leading role in the Steering Committee for a new independent, and militant workers’ federation and Numsa is confident that they will continue to work with the other unions in driving this project forward.

Fawu has also set an example by insisting that all the union’s members were fully consulted before this week’s decision was taken. This should set a precedent for the new federation and all its affiliates to abide by the decision of the 20 April Workers Summit that the new structure must be democratically built from the bottom-up by the workers, who must remain in full control, with leaders who are mandated by and answerable to the membership at all times.

The New Federation must reject the road taken by the Cosatu leadership of watering down its programme in order not to be seen as ‘oppositionist’ or ‘anti-majoritarian’ and ends up as no more than an irrelevant labour-desk for the ANC government.

It will be independent of any political party but not a-political - free to campaign for any party which shares our commitment to the full implementation of the Freedom Charter and the socialist policies to liberate workers from the tyranny of white monopoly capitalism.

Statement issued by Patrick Craven, NUMSA Acting Spokesperson, 27 August 2016