Today's Labour News

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ehrenreichMail & Guardian reports that Tony Ehrenreich, Western Cape secretary of the Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu), has informally met senior leaders of the SA Federation of Trade Unions (Saftu) and could soon join Saftu.  

Ehrenreich joined Cosatu in 1989 and is its most senior leader in the province.  Last week he announced his intention to resign from his position after Cosatu’s provincial conference next month.  This came just one week after he appeared alongside Saftu general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi at a march against proposed labour law amendments.  A senior Saftu leader commented:  “He is very key in the coloured community there and, if you want to infiltrate the Western Cape labour movement, you need him.  We have made some efforts and the reception has been encouraging.”  Ehrenreich denied that he had been officially approached by any other federation and would not elaborate on the overtures from Saftu.  Saftu’s leadership believes Ehrenreich could serve as an elected official if he decided to join an affiliated union, or could be employed directly by the federation.  Officially, Ehrenreich has written to Cosatu saying he will not stand for re-election because he wants to take a sabbatical.  Cosatu general secretary Bheki Ntshalintshali expressed doubts that Ehrenreich would be suited to Saftu or that he would leave Cosatu.


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