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The new independent trade union federation aims to fight on behalf of workers

By Tebogo Mhlanga

Over 50 trade unions have collectively joined together to support and discuss a way forward of the new independent trade union federation. It appears to be the ground  breaking summit.

The steering committee executives Zwelinzima Vavi and the president of National Union of Metalworks of South Africa (NUMSA) Andrew Chirwa addressed the workers summit based on the formation of the new federation at the Oliver Tambo Conference Centre, in Boksburg on Saturday.

Its mandate is to fight on behalf of workers without failure since President Zuma and COSATU being responsible for the complaints that has led to the new federation.

Vavi said they want the movement that is self sufficient and must practice transparency and accountability, therefore this may be achieved when unions are in the interest of workers in the workplace and the communities.

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“We have a government that has managed us to the crisis we are talking about today. Of unemployment, youth being robbed of a future,” said Vavi.

Vavi also noted that; Zuma, Nkandla, Waterkloof and Gupta headlines must come to an end. The new headline should be of decent work, better education for people and free health care facilities.

Political parties were not welcome to attend the summit.

However the president of NUMSA Andrew Chirwa said Sdumo Dlamini of COSATU criticised the summit and believed there will be no workers summit.

He continued by saying 70 percent of workers are not organised. It appears to be 25 percent of workers belonging to the trade unions with few women.

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Chirwa said they will use their strength to build this solidarity in the new federation, hence they have different trade unions in all sectors.

The May Day rally is due to happen In Mehlareng Stadium, Tembisa on Sunday. Vavi said they will launch the campaign of jobs and improve wages of the workers.

More updates on the May Day Rally to follow.

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