Irvin Jim’s life at risk: Numsa

2011-08-05 10:58

Metalworkers’ union Numsa is taking “necessary measures” to protect its general secretary Irvin Jim, following threats against him, it said today.

“Numsa is further fully conscious of the danger to the life of comrade Irvin Jim, especially in the light of concocted media lies and labelling levelled at him,” National Union of Metalworkers of SA president Cedric Gina told reporters in Johannesburg.

“Numsa will continue to take necessary measures to protect the life of its general secretary.”

The union’s fears arose from a conversation overheard last year, indicating Jim should be “removed”. The context of the discussion, which took place in a social setting, was unclear.

Recently, an unknown man arrived at Numsa’s offices during a press conference, pretending to be a journalist.

A “silly comment” he made about Jim further caused concern in the union.

According to an opinion piece on website Fin24, Jim was using nationalisation to further his bid to be the new general secretary of the Congress of SA Trade Unions (Cosatu).

The threats were attributed to Jim being “a real thorn in the side of the South African capitalist class” and its allies.

“The history of this country, among other things, warns us that when a revolutionary communist has the kind of persistent negative media coverage such as the one now directed at our general secretary, they run the risk of being assassinated. We have been warned,” said Gina.

Numsa was taking precautions, but had not reported the matter to the police.

A meeting with Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa would be held, but Gina could not say when.

Jim’s name was further being tarnished in the media by “nameless sources” linked to factional battles within Cosatu, which elects new leadership next year.

In a radio interview on Tuesday ANC Youth league president Julius Malema said the bomb squad had to search his house twice after he received threats.

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