Parties largely used Workers’ Day, which was observed on Sunday, to convey political messages ahead of the August the third local government elections.
The African National Congress officials including President Jacob Zuma spoke at the various Congress of the South African Trade Union (Cosatu) organised rallies around the country, while the Democratic Alliance addressed a Workers’ Day rally in Cape Town.
ANC’s chairperson, Baleka Mbete attended the Mpumalanga workers day celebration at Acornhoek stadium in Bushbuckridge Mpumalanga where she urged workers to unite behind the ANC.
“Moving towards a national democratic society, is very important for us to be alert to the need for us to continuously remind ourselves that, we must never take our relationships for granted.We must not take the relationship between us and our people on the ground for granted and the centrality of unity between us as that force in society that has the historic mission to lead in this project of national democratic revolution,” says Mbethe.
President Jacob Zuma has meanwhile sent out a strong warning that South Africa would be in serious trouble if the African National Congress were voted out of power.
President Zuma was addressing the (Cosatu) Workers’ Day rally in Mamelodi, Pretoria.
Cosatu celebrated the day with alliance partners the ANC and the South African Communist Party (SACP).
President Zuma says the ANC is the only political party that has the best interests of workers at heart.
“Without the African National Congress in power, this country will be in big trouble. The ANC is the only political organisation in the country that can produce policies and a legal environment that addresses the plight of the workers. The ANC needs to be in government, it needs to be in power at all material times,” says Zuma.
Zuma urged Cosatu affiliated members to campaign for the ANC during election time saying the governing party does not take its unity with the federation for granted.
The event was attended by all alliance partner members including Cosatu President Sdumo Dlamini, SACP’s Blade Nzimande and Sanco President Richard Mdakane.
They are simply saying tell Zuma we are not ashamed as we are doing a door-to-door campaign for the ANC and it seems President Zuma heard them loud and clear emphasising that the ANC takes its relations and unity with Cosatu seriously.
The president urged them to vote for the ANC saying a vote for the ANC is a vote for non-racialism as well as for peace and stability.
Maimane says it is unacceptable that more that eight million South Africans are jobless 20 years into democrac
The president says ANC is aware of concerns raised against its lazy councillors.
He also says workers have scored many victories in the past 22 years insisting that all worker rights are only guaranteed under ANC government.
Without mentioning those behind the formation of new federation by names, President Zuma says they will expose those who want to undermine the gains of the ANC rule.
Dlamini on the other hand says they are not ashamed of being called names by their detractors for being associated with the ANC.
He thanked the ANC for listening to their cries by passing laws friendly to workers.
He also used the occasion to register their concerns especially their frustration from e-tolls to labour brokers and the youth wage subsidy.
Nzimande says the alliance’s revolution is on trial insisting that they need to defend their unity at all cost.
DA leader, Mmusi Maimane, says the party will continue to fight against legislation that makes it difficult for people to find jobs. Maimane was speaking at an event to mark Workers Day in Cape Town. Maimane says it is unacceptable that more that eight million South Africans are jobless 20 years into democracy.
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