Union offers olive branch Some ‘touch-ups’ before election date set

2016-02-03 06:00
PHOTO: thabang mathebula KZN Education MEC Peggy Nkonyeni (middle) and ANC Women’s League president Bathabile Dlamini at the funeral of Imbali Councillor Garnet Mlete on Sunday.

PHOTO: thabang mathebula KZN Education MEC Peggy Nkonyeni (middle) and ANC Women’s League president Bathabile Dlamini at the funeral of Imbali Councillor Garnet Mlete on Sunday.

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COSATU used the funeral of Imbali councillor Garnet Mlete­ on Sunday to assure the ANC it will get the support of its members in the upcoming elections, despite the union federation challenging the new tax laws recently authorised by President Jacob Zuma.

Masses of ANC Moses Mabhida region members and leaders of opposition parties attended the funeral to pay tribute to him on Sunday. Mlete died after a short illness last week.

He was described as a leader who had the best interest of the community at heart. As a former MK member, a 21-gun salute was fired in his honour. Plans to name Imbali stadium after him are currently in discussion and he recently raised funds to help several young people from Willowfontain to study at Wits University this year.

ANC Women’s League president and Minister of Social Development Bathabile Dlamini said Mlete set a good example of leadership.

“Garnet built a community hall and roads, and there were still more developments coming.

“We need leaders who can defend our democracy. We should also take pride in the good work our leaders are doing and we should protect them,” she said.

Dlamini used the opportunity to hit back at critics of Zuma.

“The time has come to defend the ANC. We should be more careful because there are people who want to destroy our organisation and the ANC government.

“Our president is being criticised and ... even the coming president will suffer the same critics, therefore as an organisation we should unite and protect our leaders.”

Luhle Ndlovu, a Cosatu regional treasury, said the organisation has the ANC’s back in the municipal elections.

Despite disagreements when it comes to policies, Ndlovu said Cosatu is not at war with the ANC. She said Cosatu will challenge the tax legislation signed into law by Zuma from 2015, but would return to support the ANC to win elections.

“After we have challenged it we will come back and give them our support for the elections,” she said.

She said Cosatu will not entertain social media politics suggesting a break up with ANC.

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