COSATU and SAFTU to bring Polokwane to a standstill over socio-economic challenges


By Thabo Monyela

POLOKWANE- The two largest workers’ union federations in the country intend to bring Polokwane city to a complete standstill with marches on Wednesday, August 24, over the rising cost of living, ongoing load shedding.

The Congress of South Africa Trade Unions (Cosatu) and the SA Federation of Trade Unions (Saftu) in Limpopo will embark on separate provincial marches that intend to shut down any activity in the Polokwane CBD and surrounding areas as part of their national shut down protests over their dissatisfaction on the resisting cost of living, ongoing loadshedding, fuel costs and other issues.

Workers under Saftu joined by Pan Africanist Congress (PAC) and Azanian People’s Organisation (AZAPO) will assemble at SABC park at 08h30 am then march to the Premier’s office, while Cosatu’s affiliates will commence their march at 09h00 and march to the Premier Stan Mathabatha’s office.

The two workers’ union federations will be looking to shut down every activity in the city and beyond and also attract ordinary workers to join them in their response to the ongoing load-shedding, high unemployment rate, rising cost of living, and high rate of crime.

With the government being a major employer of these Trade Unions workers, most of the government institutions across the province will be affected as a result of this National strike.

The Limpopo Government spokesperson Ndhavhe Ramakuela said the provincial government is aware and had approved the planned marches by Cosatu and Saftu.

” We are aware of the planned march by Cosatu and Saftu which will culminate in the handing over of the memorandum to the Premier, who will be available to receive their respective memorandums” he said.

When asked what measures have, they put in place to ensure that the economic activities in the province would not be affected, Ramakuela said the approval given to these marches would work within the ambit of the law to protect both the participants and those who are not participating.

He further said work should continue for those who are not members of both Cosatu and Saftu or other participating organisations.

In response to the anticipated national shutdown, the South African National Taxi Association Council announced that it will not participate in the planned shutdown.

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