Numsa in tit-for-tat spat with SACP in lead-up to crucial conference

2013-12-05 17:23

The tit-for-tat spat between the SA Communist Party (SACP) and the National Union of Metalworkers of SA (Numsa) continues as Numsa prepares for a conference that might see it dumping the ANC.

Numsa’s leaders will meet their lawyers tomorrow to pursue a lawsuit against SACP boss Blade Nzimande for suggesting that Numsa’s Irvin Jim and Karl Cloete are business partners.

This afternoon, SACP deputy general secretary Solly Mapaila accused Jim and his “leadership clique” of using Cosatu’s disciplinary process against Zwelinzima Vavi to create a divided Cosatu.

On Tuesday, Jim called on the SACP to answer to allegations that the party’s investment arm, Masincazelane, had invested in the Gautrain. He also made a string of damning allegations against party bosses Nzimande and Senzeni Zokwana.

Mapaila said Jim was disillusioned with the ANC because his attempts to campaign for Vavi to be elected as ANC deputy president ahead of Mangaung had failed. He said Jim had done this because he had wanted to fill Vavi’s position in Cosatu.

He said the turmoil in Cosatu had little to do with policy differences and more to do with “business unionism” and the “privatisation of a variety of worker funds”.

Mapaila said: “It is time for Numsa’s rank-and-file workers to take back their union from the leadership clique around Irvin Jim, from all his tenderpreneurs and parasites who are leeching off worker retirement funds.”

Asked to explain Masincazelane’s investment, Mapaila said the SACP’s investment arm was not yielding any cash for the party.

He said the party had taken the decision to set it up in 2007 and had only received investment stakes from good Samaritans as it did not have any cash.

He repeated the call for a lifestyle audit of Jim and Cloete and said Nzimande had done his in February 2008. This was during the investigation into allegations that he had pocketed R500 000 which had allegedly gone missing after a donor allegedly gave it to the party.

Numsa spokesperson Castro Ngobese said Numsa welcomed the call for a lifestyle audit on both men as long as it was extended to the entire leadership of the tripartite alliance.

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