Vavi wants radical policies in Mangaung

2012-06-07 14:26

Cosatu boss Zwelinzima Vavi has told delegates at the National Union of Metalworkers to push for more radical policies at the ANC conference in Mangaung, and avoid getting into factional politics.

Speaking at the Numsa conference in Durban, Vavi said Mangaung should be about “our liberation and dignity in its totality”.

“When we arrive in Mangaung, we must say we want nothing else, we want the Freedom Charter.

“Even if people lobby you about generational mix, you must say we want the Freedom Charter... including the demand that the wealth of the country shall be shared and that the monopoly industries and the banks shall be transferred to the ownership of the people as a whole,” Vavi said.

He said members of the tripartite alliance should put aside factional and “palace” politics, and put the interests of South Africa’s people first.

Vavi also gave his clearest indication yet that he would not heed President Jacob Zuma’s call to unionists to take up leadership positions in the ANC and government.

He said while it was Cosatu’s policy to join the ANC and influence its direction, his personal view was that it was incorrect for him to take up positions in the ruling party and government.

He said leaders who did so were unable to speak up when things went wrong.

“You can push me. But when I have a hot potato under my tongue, don’t complain.

“Things are tough out there. The patronage thing is no small matter. It’s the most powerful weapon in every capitalist society. Every person walks around with a demon of power inside of him. It’s natural,” he said.

The five-day conference ends tomorrow.

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