COSATU Limpopo is ready to observe the International Day for Decent Work

The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) in Limpopo is ready to hold its provincial march to highlight the plight of workers and the working class on the International Day for Decent Work on 6 October 2023. This day is traditionally commemorated annually on 7 October to reflect on the challenges facing workers and the working-class and to take appropriate action.

The International Day for Decent work comes after the National Day of Action on 6 July 2023, where COSATU in the province raised several shortcomings which exit in the Limpopo Provincial Government Departments and several other offices, including the highest office in the province, the Office of the Premier. We are deeply concerned with the level of ignorance by some of these structures who blatantly snubbed the memoranda of demands that were submitted to them. Even those who did respond exhibited apathy through a shallow administrative act of writing back without addressing the matters raised on 6 July 2023. The demands raised included the following:

§  Immediate recall of the MEC for Health, Dr Phophi Ramathuba, due poor labour relations behaviour against workers in the Department of Health.

§  Speedy and effective prosecution of high-profile public and private sector cases of corruption by law enforcement agencies as matter of national priority.

§   A deliberate and more attentive implementation and resourcing of the National GBV Plan, including support for victims and harsh penalties for offenders. Funds should be made available for these programmes to be successful.

§  The elimination of the gender pay gap in all workplaces.

§  The immediate declaration and enforcement of a moratorium on retrenchments and job losses in the public interest as to halt the job loss calamity.

§  A clear plan to end unemployment and retrenchments in the province

§  Stop the privatisation of SOEs

§  Reduction of interest rates

§  An urgent solution to water and energy Crisis

§  The scrapping of the treasury note 7 circular.

§  We demanded a forensic investigation into the utilization of funds allocated to the Great North Bus Company for the acquisition of fleet.

§  We demanded that all funded vacant posts should be filled as a matter of urgency.

Three months later as we approach the International Day for Decent Work, we have not seen any measurable commitment to address these challenges faced by the working class in Limpopo. Compounding previous concerns, are new developments that have worsened the plight of workers and the working class in the province. They include the following:

  • The emergence of circular from the National Treasury which prescribes further austerity measures.
  • Unilateral change of conditions of work, these are matters of mutual interest which must be communicated.
  • Maladministration and corruption

§  Health care workers instructed to work new shifts thus causing friction between them and communities as communities are misinformed on what is happening in the department.

§  Employer failing to provide conducive conditions of work.

§  Department of Health undermining labour laws – BCEA, OHSA

§  Continuous victimization of COSATU Shopstewards.

§  It has also emerged that private companies doing work with the Office of the Premier and Department of Health do not comply with the statutory requirements on National Minimum Wage, Unemployment Insurance Fund and Compensation for Occupational Diseases and Injury.

It is against this background that the Provincial Executive Committee of COSATU in Limpopo has decided to embark on a march on 6 October 2023 to the Department of Health and Office of the Premier, to demand proper responses to the demands of 6 July 2023 and to insist immediate attention to new challenges that have developed.

We call upon all workers to take up their revolutionary cudgels by joining other workers to demand what is rightfully theirs. We further call on all fraternal organizations and our communities to support workers as they fight to defend their gains which are being continuously eroded.

The gathering point for the march is Hospital Park in Polokwane, on Magazyn Street and is scheduled to start at 8h30am on Friday 6 October 2023.

Issued by COSATU Limpopo

Hangwani Mashao(Provincial Secretary)
Mobile:067 413 0165