Come out in force for national strike – Irvin Jim

2014-02-11 17:23

Numsa general secretary Irvin Jim has called on workers to come out in force in the union’s national strike on February 26.

Speaking at a Cape Town Press Club lunch today, he repeated the National Union of Metalworkers of SA’s demand that the Employment Tax Incentive Act be scrapped.

The act was signed into law in December. Among its provisions is the subsidisation of businesses to employ young people.

“Numsa has called for a national strike and community action to demand an end to the [act], which will not encourage, but discourage, employment creation.

“We are calling on the working class and the poor of South Africa to come out and demonstrate in their numbers that we have had enough. The nation must be protected from those who are destroying it.”

Jim also repeated Numsa’s decision, made at a special congress late last year, that it would not campaign for the ANC ahead of the May 7 elections, or spend workers’ money on its campaign.

He said the working class in South Africa was currently “leaderless”, and suggested the ruling ANC was out of touch with reality.

“The message is very clear: There is very little correlation between the ANC manifesto and the reality of the people of this country.

“The working class is leaderless, the working class is restless ... because those who used to lead them see them as a problem. But the problem is those who speak in their interests today.”

Jim said the ANC and the SA Communist Party had “presided over a series of policies that have consistently failed the working class and the poor of South Africa”.

He said the structure of the South African economy had not changed, and remained the same as it was under apartheid.

“The same dependence on exporting raw minerals, the same enslavement to the minerals-energy-finance complex.

“Far from an increase in the manufacturing sector – the sector which can really produce jobs – we have a rapid process of deindustrialisation.

“We are not gaining jobs, we are losing them. In 2004, there were 3.7 million unemployed people in our country. Last year, that had risen to 4.1 million.”

According to Jim, Numsa represents 341 150 metalworkers.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.