Hundreds of Cosatu members took part in the Cape Town leg of a nationwide protest. Clad in red, they marched through the city centre to deliver a memorandum of grievances to Parliament. The workers demanded that those in power urgently address various difficulties faced by workers such as job cuts, inefficient transport systems and E-tolls.
Cosatu provincial secretary Tony Ehrenreich said the focus of the march was to deal with the key concerns of workers.
“These include the huge job losses, the fact that workers are not earning decent wages, the fact that communities are having a desperate with no public transport, no proper public health facilities and that these issues have to be addressed urgently,” Ehrenreich explained.
“Workers came out in their thousands, despite knowing that they will lose a day’s pay,” Ehrenreich added.
However, a few reports about the march suggested that under a thousand people were visibly present. Still crowds of people chanted their support for what Ehrenreich and various other members from supporting organisations, such as the CWU and the ANC Youth League, had to say.
A memorandum was handed over a representative of Transport Minister Dipuo Peters.
“We hope that there will be some resolution to this matter before the ANC goes to its national general conference this weekend so that the ANC can tell our government officials that they need to address the issues of workers,” Ehrenreich added.
Joe Chauke, president of the Communications Workers Union (CWU) says that they will continue to support COSATU because the organisation has principles and values and this march also supports the CWU.
Today also coincided with decent work day and Chauke says that CWU will have to do series crisis work as their sector faces major job loses with telecommunications network Telkom and the threat of retrenchments in the post office.
Mohammed Khalid Sayed from the ANC Youth League says supports this initiative because there are many young people that are workers so issues that affect young people affect workers.
“We go by the slogan of COSATU that an injury to one is an injury to all. VOC (Umarah Hartley)