Workers unhappy with KZN cabinet

2016-05-26 06:00

MECs, who were a “no show” at the Workers’ Parliament­ on Friday, left workers from KZN government departments angered and frustrated.

Workers said they were disappointed about the lack of interest from MECs, who were invited to this year’s meeting to present feedback from last year’s parliament held in New Castle.

The parliament was scheduled to take place over two days, but the second day had to be cancelled due to the poor attendance of MECs.

Before the event even started Natu, Cosatu, Sadtu, Saccawu, Samwu, Numsa union members and others said the parliament was not meant to begin without the presence of government leaders.

Cosatu provincial secretary, Edwin­ Mkhize, said they felt disrespected.

“We are very unhappy about the persistent failure of MECs and leaders to attend our Workers’ Parliament. We, as workers, took the time to attend this parliament only to find that not one MEC is present.”

Mkhize then asked KZN Legislature speaker Lydia Johnson to allow unions to caucus and discuss a way forward.

After the caucus Mkhize said they are dissatisfied with the situation and asked the speaker to explain why the MECs were not at the meeting.

“We are not being taken seriously as decision-makers are not here. Who is going to respond to our questions, and who will answer our questions.”

Mkhize said at the last meeting a date for the next parliament was given to stakeholders and the fact that MECs are not here shows lack of prioritising from their side.

Speaking on behalf of Natu, a delegate said that issues between ANC and Natu would result in MECs not attending the parliament.

At that point the MEC for the Department of Transport, Community Safety Willies Mchunu arrived and told angry workers that some MECs were still on the way, but others­ would not be attending because of commitments.

“MEC of Social Development Weziwe Thusi is still on her way and so is the MEC of Health, Dlomo. The MEC of education Nkonyeni and Mabuyakhulu did say they won’t make it because they are in other provincial executive committee meetings and are under pressure.”

Sadtu’s Nomarussia Caluza said they understand that the MECs are under pressure, however, as workers they also had commitments, which they had to cancel.

“We were expecting the MECs to be here as we expected them to participate.”

The speaker then asked that the parliament continue because Thusi­ and Ravi Pillay had arrived, which was accepted.

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