Cosatu asks workers to stay home on Wednesday for nationwide strike

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A Cosatu march.
A Cosatu march.
Gallo

The Congress of SA Trade Unions will hold a national "stayaway strike" on Wednesday in protest against corruption, retrenchments and unemployment, gender-based violence and attacks on collective bargaining. 

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, workers have been asked to stay at home, rather than congregate in the streets.

According to the trade union federation's General Secretary, Bheki Ntshalintshali, a few people will join motorcades in cities including Tshwane, Polokwane, Mbombela, Rustenburg, Mthatha, Bloemfontein, and more.  

The number of people attending these events will not be a measure of whether the protest is successful, however, he said. Coastu will rather gauge the success of the strike based on how many people stay away from work.

"This is a call for staying at home. We are in the middle of the Covid-19 pandemic, we don’t want to be accused as one of those organisations that brought thousands of people to the streets and therefore make a contribution to the spread of the virus," said Ntshalintshali.

"This is a new way of approaching a strike and we are fully aware people are under economic pressures and our members are telling us that a message needs to be sent in this regard. The public sector is very angry in terms of their wages."

Cosatu's first Deputy President, Mike Shingang, said government employees are expected to embark on go-slows and conduct lunch-hour pickets from Monday, as part of the union's fight against the government's non-implementation of wage increases for public servants.

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