Cosatu leader, Malema allies in war of words

2012-08-27 11:35
Julius Malema talks to reporters in Marikana. (Werner Beukes, Sapa)

Julius Malema talks to reporters in Marikana. (Werner Beukes, Sapa)

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Johannesburg - Cosatu president Sdumo Dlamini should know that economic freedom fighters do not take kindly to his threats and will not be intimidated, Friends of the ANCYL said in a statement.

"We do not know what this warning is all about because if the warning is political/ideological, Sister Sdumo will never succeed," it said.

"And if the warning is a threat of violence, Sister Dlamini should be reminded that he knows nothing about violence and does not possess any monopoly over violence."

The Friends of the ANCYL were responding to Dlamini after he told them and expelled ANC Youth League president Julius Malema to "stop walking" on the bodies of the dead mineworkers.

"For the first time Cosatu is issuing a direct warning to Malema to stop using the Lonmin mine tragedy for his personal agenda," Dlamini said at a Young Communist League of SA public lecture held in Katlehong, Ekurhuleni on Sunday.

‘Questionable struggle credentials’

At least 34 people were killed when police opened fire on them during a strike at Lonmin's Marikana mine. Around 78 were injured.

At least 10 people, who included two police officers and two security guards, were killed in the preceding week.

In the statement, the Friends of the ANCYL said Dlamini was a nurse by profession who had "questionable struggle credentials".

He was "accidentally springboarded" into the leadership of COSATU because of factional wars, the group claimed.

It said that the National Union of Mineworkers (Num) was losing ground in mines because their focus was on business dealings while workers face exploitation.

Mineworkers are subjected to difficult and dangerous working conditions with no adequate pay because there is no union representation, it said.

‘Malema fearless and courageous’

"The only thing Num does is isolate, charge and bastardise union leaders who are opposed to the self-enrinchment projects and too much salaries of Num national leaders," the statement said.

"Workers have accepted the leadership of President Julius Malema and because he is courageous and fearless, he goes to speak to the workers and represents their interests with no fear or favour. Sister Dlamini could not face workers in the mines..."

Dlamini said Cosatu was under attack from Malema and others, and believed there was an orchestrated plan to weaken Cosatu.

Friends of the ANCYL said the culture of issuing threats would lead to a difficult and dangerous political environment.

"We want to advise Cosatu to withdraw the threat and contest for political relevance through ideas and mobilisation of people on the ground," it said.

It said Cosatu was not their enemy.

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