Cosatu: 'Rescue mission post-Polokwane is on'

The Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) on Thursday said it will no longer take a “triumphalist” approach to the outcomes of the African National Congress (ANC) Polokwane conference.

Speaking at a press briefing after the federation’s first central executive committee meeting, general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi said: “In the first two months after Polokwane, Cosatu and the SACP [South African Communist Party] committed a mistake of celebrating and admiring the sterling work of the new ANC leadership.

“When that leadership makes mistakes and makes statements that have a potential of reversing the gains of Polokwane, Cosatu must speak out. We must not drop our guard,” Vavi said.

He said the honeymoon period between the election of Cosatu’s preferred ANC candidate, Jacob Zuma, and the federation was over.

“The campaign to save the ANC from the clutches of the technocrats who sought to bureaucratise the liberation movement is far from being over.

“The ‘rescue mission’ post-Polokwane is on.”

Vavi also slammed what he termed the “right-wing backlash” seeking to divide the ANC leadership at Luthuli House and the Union Buildings.

Referring to the Democratic Alliance urging President Thabo Mbeki to ignore the directives of the Polokwane conference, Vavi said it was clear that this response was out of fear of a “radical shift in the policy direction of our society”.

This, he added, demonstrated that the “privileged” would do “everything to protect their interests”.—Sapa

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