Today's Labour News

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SaftuBusinessLive reports that in an unexpected move the SA Federation of Trade Unions (Saftu) has requested a meeting with its rival Cosatu to discuss "issues of common interest".  

The organisations have been at odds since the emergence of Saftu under the leadership of former Cosatu general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi.  Cosatu’s largest affiliate, the National Union of Metalworkers of SA (Numsa), also broke ranks with Cosatu to become the backbone of the new federation.  The meeting request apparently came after informal talks between leaders of some Cosatu affiliates and those of Numsa.  The request was discussed at last week’s Cosatu central executive committee where some Cosatu affiliates objected, saying that a meeting would legitimise Saftu and its affiliates in the eyes of their members.  Saftu’s Patrick Craven said on Monday that they wanted to discuss the broader questions of "inequality, unemployment, privatisation", which were issues affecting workers across the political spectrum.  Cosatu spokesman Sizwe Pamla said they would respond to Saftu when their general secretary, Bheki Ntshalintshali, returned from the ILO conference next week.  "We have entertained the idea, and we are not hostile to it," he stated.

  • Read this report by Theto Mahlakoana in full at BusinessLive

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