NUMSA and the crisis in South Africa today

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What is the class basis of the current crisis in the South African state and in the ANC?

We, the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (NUMSA) are not surprised by the recent political events which have dominated our nation. At our 10th National Congress in December last year, we predicted that the crisis in the Black African Capitalist class is bound to worsen.

SAFTU calls for action against capitalism

The South African Federation of Trade Unions (SAFTU) is alarmed at continued reports that President Zuma is trying to dismiss Finance Minister, Pravin Gordhan, and his deputy, Mcebisi Jonas, on the basis of yet another “intelligence report” from anonymous sources alleging that the minister is at the centre of a plot, Operation Checkmate, to overthrow the state and were using their overseas road show to turn international bankers against the South African government.

Statement on Israel’s denial of my entry into Palestine

15 March 2017

I, Mpho Masemola, was yesterday (Tuesday 14 March) denied entry to Palestine by the Israeli Apartheid regime. As a former anti-apartheid political prisoner and the National Secretary of South Africa’s Ex-Political Prisoners Association (EPPA) this was a huge insult.

Workers at Turffontein Race course unite against xenophobia

Press release: National and foreign grooms unite in struggle

This Friday 10th of March at 11 am, the progressive movement of Grooms will hold action at the Turffontein Race course. The workers oppose how Phumelela Gaming and Leisure is dividing workers using their nationality.

ITUC Solidarity with Bongani Masuku. On trial for supporting Palestinian Struggles

Letter from Sharan Burrow, ITUC General Secretary

14 February 2017

Dear Bheki Ntshalintshali,
COSATU General Secretary

The International Trade Union Confederation [ITUC] stands in solidarity with Bongani Masuku, the International Relations Secretary of South African Trade Unions [COSATU], who is facing a trial before the South Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg today, 14 February 2017.

UNITED FRONT: Watch Out! The Xenophobia Monster is coming back

Invitation from United Front (Joburg region) to organise against xenophobia
Issued 9 February 2017

We are writing to you because we are concerned that xenophobia is rearing its ugly head again in South Africa. In our recent meetings we have been getting reports from various community organisations and civics which suggest this. There does not seem to be any threat of violence yet, but we all know how quickly these things can escalate. We are worried that public figures such as the Mayor of Johannesburg Herman Mashaba have made some xenophobic statements against “illegal foreigners” who hijack buildings in the city. Most seriously, an organisation in Mamelodi is trying to organise a march against “foreigners” in the community – blaming them for the structural unemployment crisis, suggesting that South Africa shouldn’t give refuge to refugees, accusing migrants of drugging women and selling them as sex slaves. What is most worrying is that this organisation has been contacting other areas such Alexandra in an attempt to spread their xenophobic ideas.

APPEAL FOR SOLIDARITY! 8 Tanzanians Arrested in Malawi as “spies”, while on a fact-finding mission at Paladin’s Kayelekera Uranium Mine

Dear friends

In December a fact-finding mission by a civil society delegation from Tanzania, visited the Kayelekera uranium mining complex in northern Malawi. They were arrested on 22nd as “Tanzanian spies”, and have been jailed ever since. The accusations have ranged from trespass to being members of a foreign organisation. Their case was due to be reviewed on 4 January, but they remain in Mzuzu jail in Malawi over six weeks later. The delegation included Caritas workers as well as local farmers from the area where uranium is likely to be prospected in southern Tanzania. 

Statement by NUCWOSA on the Horrific Death of 94 Psychiatric Patients

CAPE TOWN OFFICE: Isivivana Centre, 8 Mzala Street, Khayelitsha
TEL: 021 3610119 FAX: 021 3610149 Email:

JOHANNESBURG OFFICE: Unit 15B Vintech Park 4th Street Wynberg
TEL: 011 4403708 Email:

02 February 2017

As the newly formed union of community health care workers, we express our horror and disgust at the deaths of 94 psychiatric patients under the watch and care of the Gauteng Department of Health. It is obvious that for many years the government’s approach to healthcare of poor working class South Africans has favoured penny-pinching at the expense of decent healthcare. This approach of the ANC-led government has prevailed in virtually all spheres of social support where budget cuts for the poor along with self-enriching corrupt tenders and outsourcing deals by government leaders and officials is the priority instead of “A Better Life for All”.

“There is no decision on “18 month moratorium” for mining on the Wild Coast”

Amadiba Crisis Committee (ACC) 2016-11-24: DMR pushing for Xolobeni mining at Wild Coast Sun meeting: Where is the “18 month moratorium”?

Today the Department of Mineral Resources (DMR) called “Xholobeni stakeholders” to a meeting at Wild Coast Sun Casino. An unclear invitation said the meeting was “a result of the imbizo at Xholobeni”. This was the meeting 19 July that ended in chaos, when the Dep Police Minister Ms Sotyu and Dep Minister of Mining, Mr Oliphant promoted the mining application instead of engaging in how to stop violent attacks against the coastal Amadiba Community that says no to mining  .

The NUMSA Moment – Has it lost momentum?

Martin Jansen

This critique is offered for the union ahead of its next national congress in December 2016 as food for thought towards unlocking NUMSA’s historical task that present possibilities for unifying the working class in struggle, increasing its confidence and steering us towards socialist revolution.

In an interview last year, Floyd Shivambu, the EFF’s Deputy President, had this to say in response to NUMSA’s reluctance to build unity with them,[i] “What we know is that efforts to start a rival socialist or workers’ party will dwindle into insignificance and will not benefit the working class and workers whom our ideological allies claim to represent.” It has been three years since the historic NUMSA moment and it appears that the EFF leader’s claim is true. For three years we have not seen any significant mass campaigns or struggles led by NUMSA, let alone grassroots mass democratic organisations emerging that have captured working class interests. What are we to make of this?


NUMSA general strike and march against the 'youth tax', 19 March 2014