Cosatu congress credentials adopted after heated debate

2015-11-23 16:38
(Genevieve Quintal, News24)

(Genevieve Quintal, News24)

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Johannesburg - A two-hour heated debate on whether or not the credentials at Cosatu's national congress should be adopted ended in a vote on Monday with the majority in favour their adoption.

A total of 1 962 delegates voted for the adoption of the credentials, while 331 voted against it. There were 187 abstentions.

Delegates were asked to stand if they were in favour and sit if they were not.

The Food and Allied Workers Union (Fawu) objected to the adoption of the credentials calling into question the legitimacy of Cosatu second deputy president Zingiswa Losi's position.

Read More: Cosatu congress to elect new leaders and clean house

Fawu deputy general secretary Moleko Phakedi raised the issue, pointing out that Losi had been elected into her position when she was still a National Union of Metalworkers Union (Numsa) member in 2012.

Last year, Losi resigned from her job, where she was a Numsa shopsteward.

Shortly after this, she joined the Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union (Popcru).

Numsa was then expelled from Cosatu in November last year.

Fawu's motion was seconded by the SA Commercial, Catering and Allied Workers Union (Saccawu) and Public and Allied Workers Union of South Africa.

But this was not enough to go up against some of Cosatu's large public service unions.

Fawu came under fire from affiliates such as the National Union of Mineworkers, the National Health and Allied Workers Union, the SA Democratic Teachers' Union and Popcru.

Unions felt that the issue had been dealt with at the Special National Congress earlier this year and in the central executive committee.

During the presentation of credentials, before the debate, it was announced that two unions, the SA Football Players Union (Safpu) and SA State and Allied Workers Union (Sasawu) were not in attendance.

Read more: Cosatu congress: Zuma told to sit and wait

Sasawu in a statement announced that it had decided to withdraw from participating in the congress.

This had been conveyed to Cosatu president Sdumo Dlamini in a letter.

"Although we did attend the special national congress, as one of the unions which called for it... the hostilities which prevailed at the congress convinced us that we had no hope of the Congress discussing the issues which it was called to discuss," the union said.

"We were also startled... by the fact that our federation expects us to pay a fee for tables, as if we were participants in a vending process, and we were not party to any CEC meetings which reached such a decision."

The 12th Cosatu National Congress being held in Midrand, Johannesburg, was running five hours behind schedule on Monday.

President Jacob Zuma was expected to address the congress earlier in the day, however this had been postponed.

Dlamini asked delegates to allow Zuma to address them before they had concluded the debate on credentials, but this request was shot down.

Dlamini announced that Zuma had to leave to attend an ANC national working committee meeting, but would return later to address the congress.

Read more on:    fawu  |  cosatu  |  saccawu  |  jacob zuma  |  sdumo dlamini  |  zingiswa losi  |  johannesburg  |  politics

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