Notes from underground

يارب يسوع المسيح ابن اللّه الحيّ إرحمني أنا الخاطئ

Birth pangs of a new South African workers party

I have long thought that we needed a new opposition party to the left of the ANC, that could represent workers, and that the Tripartite Alliance was basically flawed, as the ANC has become increasingly Thatcherist. Martin Plaut gives a good analysis of the background to this.

But it seems that we will be spoilt for choice in the 2014 elections, as a new party seems to be formed every week. First there was Agang, the party formed by Mamphela Ramphele, then there was Julius Malema’s Economic Freedom Fighters, and there is also, I believe, a suchi party, led by a couple of ex-cons, so the 2014 elections will be quite interesting.


With considerable pain and after a long gestation it seems that a new workers’ party is being born in South Africa.

By Martin Plaut Published 29 November 2013 12:31

Source: New Statesman

Members of Numsa at a protest in Durban in September 2010. (Photo: Getty)
Members of Numsa at a protest in Durban in September 2010. (Photo: Getty)

The National Union of Metalworkers (Numsa) appears on the verge of splitting away from the African National Congress. As the largest affiliate of the main trade union movement – Cosatu – this would be a heavy blow for the party, which will rely heavily on the unions during next year’s general election. The metalworkers represent some 291,000 workers out of the Cosatu’s 2.2 million strong Cosatu membership.

The issue is to be debated at a Numsa special congress, scheduled for 13 – 16 of December. The ANC is clearly deeply worried by the prospect. The unions have been linked to the party since 1986…

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