Cosatu asks Numsa to drop court action

2013-11-21 16:39
(Picture: Sapa)

(Picture: Sapa)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Johannesburg - Cosatu has asked Numsa and two other affiliates to withdraw their court action over general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi's suspension.

"The request was made yesterday [Wednesday]... we are to wait and see," Cosatu second deputy president Zingiswa Losi told reporters in Johannesburg on Thursday.

"It is not in the interest of Cosatu finding itself in court on these matters."

The request was made to the National Union of Metalworkers of SA (Numsa), the Food and Allied Workers' Union, and the SA Football Players' Union at Cosatu's three-day central executive committee (CEC) meeting this week.

Losi said the unions could not give the CEC an answer immediately.

"We would believe that they have taken that request and they will have to go back and consider [it], and they will have to come back and inform the federation of their decision."

Numsa has lodged an application in the South Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg challenging the suspension.

Vavi then filed papers to be added as an applicant in Numsa's challenge.

In these, he asks the court to grant him an interim order interdicting and restraining Cosatu from enforcing any decision taken at its CEC meeting in August.

He wants final relief to review and set aside the decision to suspend him and institute disciplinary proceedings.

Cosatu president Sidumo Dlamini said the trade union federation had not asked Vavi to withdraw his court action.

"The CEC was talking to the affiliates, we did not ask comrade Zweli.

"All we will continue to do [is]... we will scorn off anybody who will not use and exhaust the internal processes of a progressive organisation and quickly take matters outside the organisation, like court," Dlamini said.

Vavi was put on special leave pending the outcome of a disciplinary hearing relating to his affair with a junior employee.

Rape charge

In July, the employee accused him of rape. He said they had an affair. The woman subsequently withdrew a sexual harassment complaint against him.

Cosatu acting general secretary Bheki Ntshalintshali said the probe into Vavi's conduct was nearly complete. The outcome of the investigation would be submitted to the CEC which would decide whether or not to bring charges against Vavi.

Dlamini said the issue was not just about "having sex in the office", and a number of issues were being investigated.

These included employment, the recruitment policy, the name of the employee being given to the media, and power relations in Cosatu's office.

"The investigation uncovered other things which need further investigation. It cannot be an overnight thing," Dlamini said.

"It is not the fault of Cosatu. It is not the fault of investigators that there is a delay."

He said the investigators needed those involved to co-operate, which Vavi had not initially done.

National congress

Numsa also came under fire at the CEC meeting for issuing a letter accusing Dlamini of dragging his feet regarding the request for a special national congress.

Ntshalintshali said the union was asked to withdraw the letter which it agreed to do.

He said a Cosatu special national congress would not take place this year.

"The president reported on the practicalities of convening such a congress, including among others, timing, costs and resources, the state of readiness of the affiliates, and the objectives and agenda of the congress.

"It was agreed that these issues be referred to a meeting of the NOBs [national office bearers] and affiliates' presidents and general secretaries."

They would report back to a special CEC meeting to be convened to discuss internal processes. If that meeting could not resolve the matter it would be taken to the CEC in February next year.

Dlamini said Numsa's refusal to take part in Cosatu's "rolling mass action" was discussed by the CEC.

"When there are disruptions of the action... by members of the union... the CEC says no it can't be.

"Cosatu NOBs must talk to Numsa directly. We don't want to find ourselves in a situation where we think we moving in the same direction [when we are not]," he said.

Read more on:    cosatu  |  numsa  |  sidumo dlamini  |  johannesburg

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.
NEXT ON NEWS24X 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

Competition regulation for a growing and inclusive economy

ADVERTORIAL: The Competition Commission of South Africa is conducting advocacy work in the South African automotive aftermarket industry and has gazetted a Draft Code of Conduct for public comment.

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.