Numsa march under way

By Drum Digital
19 March 2014

Numsa's protest march got under way at Zoo Lake in Johannesburg before noon.

Numsa's protest march got under way at Zoo Lake in Johannesburg before noon on Wednesday.

The marchers began making their way out of Zoo Lake and were heading to Rosebank via Jan Smuts Road.

The march for jobs was expected to proceed to the National Economic Development and Labour Council (Nedlac) premises in Rosebank where they would hand over a memorandum of understanding to Nedlac officials.

National Union of Metalworkers SA general secretary Irvin Jim was expected to address the marchers later.

About 2000 people, mostly clad in the union's signature red T-shirts, began gathering at the lake from early on Wednesday morning.

Others wore the red T-shirts and berets of the Economic Freedom Fighters.

They sang struggle songs, ululated, blew whistles, and danced.

Some of the songs criticised President Jacob Zuma.

The marchers also carried posters which read "Smash false solutions," and "employment incentives act equals exploitation".

While several Numsa posters were erected in the area, a large poster depicting a picture of EFF leader Julius Malema was also sprawled across the grass.

A group of youngsters carried a big yellow banner bearing the words "Equal Education" written on it, while a vendor walked around selling red berets to marchers.

Other vendors had set up stalls selling fast food and cold drinks at the lake.

Numsa officials said police had urged marchers to leave their sticks and knobkerries at the venue for security purposes and not to carry them on their march.

Earlier, the same marshal had said while there was a strong police presence in the area, the police were not there for their protection.

"You know what they are here for," he said over a microphone.

Marchers were also asked to be cautious as one protester who had come from Ekurhuleni was reportedly knocked down by a car.

It was unclear how badly the person had been injured, or where the accident had taken place.

-by Sapa

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