COSATU Free State Post Provincial Executive Committee (PEC) statement- 7-8 December

The Provincial Executive Committee(PEC) was convened on 7-8 December 2022 as the last meeting for 2022. The meeting came three months after the 14th National Congress, which was held at Gallagher Estate in September 2022. It also took place a week after the Central Executive Committee meeting held on 28-30 November 2022. 

The meeting took place against the backdrop of the imminent closure of SA Cloth, which is the last largest single employer in the area, with 1700 workers. Threats to job security and the struggles of workers continue to be present, more so in the current economic tide.  These threats were worsened by the electricity and water crisis in the area.

Furthermore, there were workers employed by a security company in the Mangaung Metropolitan Municipality who hadn’t received their salaries for close to three months.  

The meeting received a report that Fezile Dabi Municipality could have reinstated the workers who were unfairly dismissed by the Municipal Manager some years ago, but that action was blocked by the ANC councilors. We will be seeking a meeting with the relevant structures to have a full understanding of the matter, and it remains an unacceptable stance taken by deployees of the organisation that claims to be a caring organisation!

We met during a period where the ANC IPC meeting was disrupted. We are hearing accusations and counter accusations to that effect. We will await the formal report of the structures about the matter. But it remains a very sore point in our struggle for emancipation.

We met against the backdrop where some of the serious weaknesses in the constitution of our country have been revealed through the release of an agent provocateur who almost plunged the country into civil war was released merely based on his human rights. We firmly believe that the constitution fails to protect the victims and does not take into consideration what intention Janus Walus and his co-conspirators could have had on the country.

We also met whilst the ANC is moving ahead with the preparations for the hosting of January 8 statement event in Bloemfontein.


The PEC is quite comfortable with the levels of solidarity and support that have been displayed by the Affiliates in the province and we believe that we are on the right trajectory to build the unity of the workers across the sectors whilst striving to put into action the principle ‘an injury to one is an injury to all.’

We have adopted a strategic plan that has been extrapolated from the 5th Provincial Congress held in February 2022 and informed by the directives of the 14th National Congress. The PEC has also adopted a year planner for 2023.

We welcome the responsibility to organise and host the 20th anniversary of the Saulpoort Dam disaster when the bus coming from Sol Plaatjie Municipality in Northern Cape ferrying workers to the Workers’ Day celebration plunged into a dam and 51  breadwinners who lost their lives. Preparations have begun and we are pulling out all the stops to ensure that we host a successful event in honour of those lives that were lost.


The PEC noted the recent developments in relation to the Makro strike. The issue that received major attention was the union bashing attitude of these Walmart acquired company towards organised labour. We took a decision to work even harder to mobilise and support the SACCAWU strike.

The meeting noted the current situation at SAPO as well as the reasons that led to the strike for job security. It is disheartening to see what the ANC deployees in positions of power have dismally failed to protect this strategic state-owned entity and have allowed it to be used as a conduit for state funds whilst the company is crumbling. The deployees should hang their heads in shame for what they have done to this and other state-owned enterprises which have collapsed!  

The PEC supported the Public Sector strike against the unilaterally implemented 3% salary increase. We reject that with the contempt it deserves. The PEC vowed to continue to mobilise for the intensification of the strike.


The PEC confirmed the joint COSATU/LFTU project which would create a platform for both Federations to share experiences and to plan programs to defend the rights of the workers and the working class. We will be strengthening our relations going further and making sure we unite as workers despite the artificial border which have been constructed by our colonizers.


We note the fact that the Federation has not finalised the discussion concerning the support for the SACP to contest state power in the 2024 general elections. We will respect that process to the latter and we will follow suit when a decision is made at a national level.

We have noted the recent ANC Regional Conferences which were held in both Mangaung and Lejweleputswa Regions. We are disappointed though by the events that unfolded in relation to both conferences whereby there was an attempt to disrupt the conference in Lejweleputswa. In Mangaung a parallel conference unfolded on the other side of town.

It is deeply worrying that some leaders would be consumed my greed to occupy leadership positions that they would go to an extent of damaging the very organisation they want to lead by hook or crook! Should they be successful and ascend how will they unite the members they have used to play such an active role in dividing? We call upon  all members and leaders of the movement to respect the organisation first and always work towards the unity of the organisation.

We hope and believe that comrades have learned from the two conferences and may only improve going forward. It would really be disappointing if the mistakes from the two conferences can recur with others going forward.

We will be approaching our Alliance partner the SACP to convene a meeting of the left axis where we will be analysing the recent and historical developments with regards to the impact of the struggle towards achieving socialism in our lifetime! We hope to host that meeting early in 2023.

We have noted with grave concern the reality that some municipalities, led by the Metro would be returning almost R800 million back to treasury as unspent funds. As COSATU we are very disappointed with this monumental failure and call on COGTA and the Provincial Government to administer consequence management.

We have noted the mountainous failures of Mangaung, Kopanong and Maluti-A-Phofung Municipalities. As the Federation we are of the view that both the political and administrative leadership of those municipalities should hang their heads in shame. We call for the immediate disbandment of these three municipalities. We believe that these municipalities should be reconstituted from the ground if we are to see progress. We have no confidence in their abilities to provide services in their current form and state.

Issued by COSATU Free State

Enquiries Provincial Secretary Monyatso oa Mahlatsi @ 051 447 5499 or 076 115 9923