The Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) on Friday backed a call by African National Congress Youth League (ANCYL) president Julius Malema for mine nationalisation.
”The ANCYL makes the valid point that the nationalisation of the mines is particularly relevant in the light of the global financial crisis and the massive job losses in the mining sector,” said Cosatu spokesperson Patrick Craven.
Craven said this was in line with established Cosatu policy as well as the 1955 Freedom Charter.
On July 2 Malema was quoted in The Sowetan calling for nationalisation at the launch of the youth league’s political school.
”At the moment, when the imperialist forces are accepting the failures of capitalism, we should ask whether the time has not arrived for the government to make sure that the state owns the mines and other means of production as called for in the Freedom Charter,” said Malema.
On the same day, the ANC dismissed nationalisation, saying the policy was not on the table.
”It is not ANC policy to nationalise mines, but the ANC does provide for people to question if they need to do so,” said spokesperson Jessie Duarte.
She said she had examined Malema’s remarks and concluded: ”He didn’t say he is going to nationalise… He thinks in the current climate it might be an idea to discuss the idea.” — Sapa