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South African Protest News 13 - 26 March 2011 (2011) South African Protest News 13 - 26 March 201.  : -.

Anti Walmart protest
22 March 2011

Members of the "anti-Walmart coalition" protest in Pretoria, South Africa on 22 March 2011, during the competition tribunal hearings into US retailer Walmart's acquisition of a controlling share in Massmart.

14 arrested after election protests
News24 25 March 2011

Mahikeng - Fourteen people are due to appear in North West courts on Wednesday following protests over election candidates and service delivery, provincial police said.

Six men were arrested for public violence on Tuesday in Boikhutso in Kudu and Philo streets after they allegedly barricaded roads with burning tyres and rocks, Brigadier Thulani Ngubane said.

A group of about 30 people involved in the protest was unhappy about the selection of candidates for the upcoming local government elections and over service delivery.

In Taung on Monday about 400 residents gathered at Kokomeng village where they also burned tyres and blocked the street with rocks.

Police fired rubber bullets to disperse them. Three men and five women were arrested. A local leader convened a meeting to resolve the issue but, Ngubane said 90% of the people walked out.

The 14 arrested would appear in various courts on Wednesday.

On Tuesday in Mahikeng, along the road between Mahikeng and Zeerust, about 21 people gathered to voice displeasure over the election candidate lists. In Ipelegeng about 50 locals barricaded roads with stones and burning tyres.

Protests erupt in three provinces
The ANC in the North West could not immediately be reached for comment.

Protests erupted in three provinces this week over the selection of candidates to stand as councillors in the elections.

In the Western Cape on Tuesday ANC members stormed the provincial headquarters in Cape Town and had to be removed by police.

Eighteen people were arrested following a protest in Ficksburg, in the Free State, on Tuesday night. The ANC has been taken to court over its Eastern Cape lists.

Frustration over lists was also one of the causes of a violent protest in Ermelo, Mpumalanga, last month.

ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe on Tuesday described unhappiness over candidate selection as "hiccups".

Mantashe said these incidents reflected a "disappointment emanating from a democratic process". Complaints received resulted from particular candidate's "ambitions" being "watered down", he said.

SAMWU and COSATU to intensify action in Musina

SAMWU and our federation COSATU will on Monday intensify our long standing call for the removal of Musina’s Municipal Manager, over barefaced corruption and the deliberate wasting of tax payers money.

The Musina community will also forward its demands with regards to service delivery, on the 28th of March 2011. The workers and the masses will descend on the street of Musina to express their rage over the barefaced corruption in the Musina Municipality.

The march will commence at 9:30am on Monday 28th March 2011 and a memorandum will be handed to the MEC of Local Government at 12:45.

For further information, please contact SAMWU’s Provincial Secretary Alfred Sithole on 072 159 6495.

Issued by;

Tahir Sema.
South African Municipal Workers' Union of COSATU.
National Media and Publicity Officer.
Office: 011-331 0333.

Fax: 0866186479.
Cell: 0829403403.

Protest over murder of farmer
VolkStaat 16 March

This morning in front to the regional court of Randfontein (41 km west of Johannesburg), it was held a demonstration protest against the crime in southern Africa, which in particular affects the Boer farmers. The event was organized after the murder of Koos van Rooyen, which occurred on March 4 at Witfontein (in the same area).

The initiative was attended by representatives of various organizations: the Vryheidsfront Plus (VF+ / Freedom Front Plus, FF+), the Afrikaner Weerstandsbeweging (AWB), the Verkenners Beweging, the AfriForum and the Democratic Alliance (DA).

Workers in NW will march over corruption and disappointment by ANC

Workers at the Naledi local Municipality in Vryburg will be marching today at midday to the office of the Mayor, Ruth Mompati, to deliver a memorandum. This memorandum will detail corruption in the Naledi Municipality, involving the Acting Municipal Manager.

Workers have evidence of corruption in the Municipality by the Acting Municipal Manager, which they included in the memorandum to be handed over to the Mayor.

The Municipal Council took a decision last week to suspend the Municipal Manager over corruption, but the ANC in the region decided to force the Council to rescind the decision that was taken.

SAMWU in the North West province have indicated that workers are disappointed with the ANC, as workers are now forced to believe that the ANC is condoning corruption in the Naledi Municipality.

This comes just a few weeks after SAMWU had the following to say at its all important National Executive Committee meeting on the 7th of March 2011; “Samwu at its last Congress in 2009 and the Cosatu Congress of the same year resolved that it would support the ANC in the forthcoming local government elections. However, a number of recent developments have made the implementation of this resolution difficult to enforce.”

For further details about the march contact SAMWU’s North West provincial secretary Jacob Modimoeng on 082 061 7800

Issued by;

Tahir Sema.
South African Municipal Workers' Union of COSATU.
National Media and Publicity Officer.
Office: 011-331 0333.

Fax: 0866186479.
Cell: 0829403403.

ANC poll list clashes rage on
Nompumelelo Magwaza 25 March 2011

Police had their hands full on Thursday, keeping ANC supporters apart as disputes over the party’s controversial process of selecting local government election candidates threatened to escalate into pitched battles in several Durban townships.

ANC members in many areas have expressed unhappiness with those selected to represent their wards in the May 18 elections, and the party this week deployed senior officials to resolve disputes in affected areas.

In most instances, communities complained that the candidates placed on the nominations list were not the people they had chosen.

Communities had been asked to choose four candidates, who were then screened. The names then went to the ANC’s regional and provincial executive committees, where candidates were chosen and the lists were returned to the wards. However, ward committees found that their preferred candidates had been replaced in some cases.

Protests took place in areas that included Clermont, White City and Amaoti in Inanda, KwaMashu, Ntuzuma and on the South Coast.

On Thursday, police arrested 22 people in Clermont on public violence charges after residents emptied rubbish bins and burnt tyres on the main road.

In White City, Inanda, ANC members clashed over the selected candidate.

The group opposed to the candidate blocked a road and faced off against the candidate’s supporters.

The leader of the opposition group, Joseph Nzama, said they had communicated their concerns about alleged corrupt activities to regional and provincial structures.

“We have reported that he sold houses to people and that he has criminal cases opened against him. We have also complained about this to the mayor and the head of housing in the municipality, but nothing has been done,” he said.

Another opposition leader, Steven Qwabe, said the community was adamant that it did not want the man elected as councillor because he was corrupt.

“Despite all our efforts, his name was first on the list. We will not vote for a person who will not meet our needs,” he said.

Sibusiso Sityhale, deputy chairman of the branch, said the opposing group had selected an alternative candidate who would contest the election independently.

“We will meet at the polls. The results will show who the real ANC is,” he said.

In Lamontville, chaos broke out at a meeting called by the ANC provincial leadership on Wednesday night.

Locals said the meeting, attended by ANC provincial treasurer Peggy Nkonyeni, senior eThekwini councillor Nigel Gumede and SACP provincial secretary Themba Mthembu, turned messy after some people were locked out of the hall during the voting session.

The meeting, which continued until early on Thursday, had been called to review the area’s list, but it degenerated into chaos when Nkonyeni said the list would not be changed in spite of objections.

One resident said they would “rather vote for a monkey” than for the candidate selected by the leaders.

In KwaNdengezi, people said they did not want to vote for John Zulu, who had been a councillor for 10 years.

“We need change. We had agreed as a community that we do not want Zulu as councillor, but the list came back with his name,” said Zakhele Xaba. He said people had decided to find an independent candidate.

ANC members in Pietermaritzburg and in the Umdoni municipal area said they would not vote for the party if the nomination lists had not been changed by today. The deadline for lists to be submitted is 5pm on Friday.

ANC spokesman Ishmael Mnisi said the party condemned violent action by members who disagreed with the candidates’ lists. He said the selection process had guidelines and every province had followed those guidelines.

“We appeal to people not to vote for personalities, but for what the party stands for,” he said.

In Cape Town earlier this week, ANC members unhappy with the list process held provincial leaders in their offices. - Mercury

Cable thief stoned to death
Mandilakhe Tshwete 24 March 2011

A Cape Flats man has been stoned to death after trying to steal electricity cables.

The man, only identified as Masangweni, was found tethered to a tree in Brown’s Farm, Philippi, on Wednesday.

Philippi residents spotted him early in the morning trying to cut wires from the informal settlement’s illegal electricity connections.

Enraged community members caught the startled thief, tied him up and stoned him to death.

The bloodstained stones could be seen next to Masangweni’s battered body.

A Philippi resident, who wishes to remain anonymous, says Masangweni was a notorious skollie who had been terrorising the community.

“We had just had a meeting with him about his thug life and he told us he had changed, but then he was caught stealing,” he says.

“When we had the meeting, we told him someone will kill him. And it turned out exactly like that, although it happened in another area.”

The man says Masangweni was part of a burglary syndicate.

“They stole fridges from people’s shacks when there was no one at home,” he says.

“They would hire a cockroach taxi and transport the fridges to another area.

“But we caught them and forced them to show us where they sold the fridges and other goods.

“They did and we let them go with a warning.”

Police spokesman Captain FC van Wyk says a murder docket is open.

“At about 5am, a body of a man was discovered tied to a tree with multiple wounds,” he says.

“Nobody has been arrested.” - Daily Voice


Dear Staff and Students

Afternoon classes at the Westville Campus were disrupted by SASCO aligned students today, Wednesday 23 March 2011.

The students moved from the quad to the L Block where they disrupted lectures.

RMS was at the scene and tried to control the situation. The Police were called in and the students dispersed.

The students have been reminded by Student Services and RMS that the court interdict is still in force.

Management is not aware of the reasons behind this disruption.

Issued by
Ms Nomonde Mbadi
Executive Director
Corporate Relations

COSATU N Cape Press Statement, 24 March 2011
Cosatu 24 March 2011

The Congress of South African Trade Unions together with its affiliate SAMWU in the Northern Cape raises our irritation at the behaviour of Mr Goolam Akhawaray, the Municipal Manager at Sol Plaatjie Municipality.

The decision that Mr Akhawaray has taken to outsource the fixing of potholes and the sanitation section in Sol Plaatjie is proof that he does not know what he is doing.

That decision is counter-revolutionary and in contrast with our government’s commitment to create decent jobs. For Mr Akhawaray to take that reactionary decision without consulting SAMWU displays the levels of his arrogance.

He makes a claim that those workers were inefficient in executing their duties while he has failed to provide them with the necessary tools for the work. If those workers were so efficient to fix all our roads during the World Cup because they had to impress foreigners, what has changed now?

As COSATU we believe that this outsourcing is not an innocent act aimed at facilitating service delivery, but there is a friend or a connected individual who has been promised a tender.

We are now convinced more than ever before that Mr Akhawaray was not the best appointment for Sol Plaatjie Municipality and he is not worth a cent of what he is earning. He is gradually plunging the municipality into a deeper crisis.

The behaviour of Mr Akhawaray at Sol Plaatjie Municipality is an insult to the good name and the legacy of the founding Secretary General of the ANC after whom the municipality is named.

We call on the Sol Plaatjie Municipal Council to rein in Mr Akhawaray and stop him in his tracks before he runs the municipality into bankruptcy. If he is not stopped, he will outsource the whole municipality and our dear government will be left with no tools to deliver services to the poor.

Experience has taught us that outsourcing is more expensive than insourcing as those vultures will always put profits before people.

We will not leave Mr Akhawaray this time around and we will mobilise the entire community of Kimberley and surrounding areas to withhold their money and stop paying for poor services until sanity prevails in that Municipality.

He must rest assured that this will not go unchallenged.

We are also going to write a formal letter to the public protector to investigate the sale of land in Sol Plaatjie Municipality despite the moratorium on such sale. We must get reasons why there was a sale of land in defiance of that council decision and the culprits will have to be brought to book.

Our honest view is that the sooner Mr Akhawaray goes the better for Sol Plaatjie municipality.

For further information contact the COSATU N Cape Provincial Secretary,
Anele Gxoyiya @ 082 829 1961

18 Arrested in Free State protest
INet Bridge, Sapa 23 March 2010

Eighteen people were arrested following a protest in Ficksburg on Tuesday night, Free State police said.

Protestors looted and burnt 12 shops belonging to foreign nationals, said Captain Phumelelo Dhlamini.

The demonstration was believed to be in reaction to changes in the candidate lists for the local elections, from which preferred candidates' names had been removed.

No one was injured during the protest.

On Monday, six people were arrested for public violence during a protest near Bronville in another "election-related" protest.

Protesters gathered at the Erfdeel Road sang, burnt tyres and blocked the road with rocks. They stoned three houses in Mandela Park, Bronville, including a crèche.
The crowd was dispersed late on Monday night.

Khayelitsha Residents Protest Over Lack of Electricity
Nombulelo Damba 23 March 2011

Residents of the Makhaza 37 Section B informal settlement have been on the rampage since Saturday.

Every evening hundreds of residents have been scattering rubbish over the roads and burning tyres in a protest over the lack of electricity in the area. Last night a group of residents burnt Metrorail signal cables near the Chris Hani station, disrupting trains at the end of the Khayelitsha line.

The protest was sparked when a six-year-old girl was badly shocked by a live wire from an illegal connection on Saturday.

The young girl, one of many whom residents say are regularly shocked or electrocuted from illegal connections in the area, spent a number of days being treated in hospital.

The residents have had enough. They say they want the City of Cape Town and Eskom to provide electricity to their area.

They say four weeks ago the city promised that electricity would soon be provided, but they are still waiting.

They have also vowed not to vote in the upcoming local government elections if they do not get power.

Resident Luvuyo Konti, 19, said: "Since last year more than ten kids have died here because of electric shocks. Our government knows that but they keep on giving us empty promises. Enough is enough we want electricity and the strike is continuing until we get it."

A resident who did not want to be named said her child died in front of her two months ago after being shocked by an illegal connection.

"He was playing with his friend. An electric wire fell and he was shocked. I couldn't blame anyone because we all using this illegal electricity."

But she said if electricity had been provided to the settlement her boy would still be alive.

"Government must do something. We want electricity."

Residents' Committee member Whitey Ngoniwe said a meeting was held with City of Cape Town officials four weeks ago where the city promised to provide electricity.

"But nothing has happened. They want us to look ... like liars. We've been giving residents empty promises, that's why people are protesting. They (residents) see us as liars and I don't blame them," said Ngoniwe.

Questioned about the promises made by the City, ward councilor Nolufefe Gexa said the promises had been made by Democratic Alliance Member of Parliament Malizole Mnqasela.

But Mnqasela said the protests had been stirred up by the ANC Youth League (ANCYL) to make the DA "look bad".

ANC Youth League regional secretary Loyiso Nkohla said Makhaza residents had been protesting for electricity since 2009.

"ANCYL has nothing to do with what is happening in Makhaza. Whoever said that from the DA has no proof," said Nkohla.

City of Cape Town spokesperson Rulleska Singh said providing electricity to the informal settlement was Eskom's duty.

However, Singh said a sub-station had recently been built in the area on land provided by the city.

But Eskom provincial spokesperson Jolene Henn, said she did not know about any protests over electricity provision. "As Eskom we were not informed," said Henn.

Police spokesperson Nosiphiwo Mtengwana confirmed the ongoing protests in the area but said no arrests have been made.

However, she said police have stepped up patrols in the area

Police respond as Taung march turns ugly
IOLNEWS 22 March 2011

Johannesburg - Police fired rubber bullets at protesters who barricaded roads and burned turned tyres at Kokomeng in Taung in the North West, a spokesperson said on Monday.

Captain Adele Myburgh said the violence started at 10.30am when police were informed about an “illegal gathering” of 400 people.

“The police mobilised and went out and we gave them time to disperse,” she said.

“They didn't want to disperse. They were unhappy because of service delivery problems in the area.”

Myburgh said the crowd barricaded the road with rocks and burned tyres.

“Police gave them time to disperse before using rubber bullets.”

At 3.50pm the police arrested three men and five women in the area for public unrest.

Myburgh said the situation was “tense” and was being monitored by the public order policing unit.

The SABC reported that the protesters were mostly young people and that they accused the provincial ANC leadership of fiddling with the candidates’ list for the upcoming local government elections. - Sapa

Taung protests continue
IOLNEWS 22 March 2011

Protesters continued barricading roads at Kokomeng in Taung overnight, North West police said on Tuesday.

“It went on during the night. They barricaded roads with rocks and burning tyres,” said Captain Adele Myburgh.

The police managed to re-open the roads.

Myburgh said no further arrests were made and the situation was under control on Tuesday morning.

On Monday afternoon, police fired rubber bullets at protesters and arrested three men and five women for public violence.

The SABC reported that the protesters were unhappy with the provincial African National Congress candidate lists for the upcoming local government elections. - Sapa

Housing protest in E London
Boxer Ngwenya, (The Star) 17 March 2011

Residents of Duncan Village, East London, blocked roads and burned tyres in a housing protest on Wednesday, Eastern Cape police said.

Protesters toyi-toyied and blocked roads with rubble and burning tyres over government housing that had been 'hijacked' from them, said Captain Stephen Marais.

“The protesters have the title deeds to government houses allotted to them, but the houses have been illegally occupied by other people,” he said.

The protesters refrained from violence and dispersed peacefully when given a verbal warning. The use of force was not necessary.

Marais said protests were held over the same issue in October and November last year. - Sapa

Drama at ANC’s Cape offices
Sandiso Phaliso, Carien du Plessis, Xolani Koyana and Yusuf Omar 23 March 2011

Members of the ANC’s Provincial Executive Committee (PEC) were on Tuesday held up in their offices for hours by a crowd of ANC branch members who stormed the ANC provincial offices off St George’s Mall.

Shortly after midday, after about two hours of protests, police were called to calm the crowd. Talks resumed, but late in the afternoon police were called in again and some angry ANC members were removed from the building. A crowd continued to toyi-toyi outside until they were forced to disperse by the police.

The incident prompted ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe to comment that violent outbursts around the finalisation of the ANC’s election lists were “a little bit of a hiccup” and “disappointments of the democratic process”.

The drama unfolded when at least 150 ANC members from 16 provincial branches refused to let six PEC members leave their offices over disagreements regarding the branch candidate lists for the May 18 local government election. The six included provincial secretary-general Songezo Mjongile and Dullah Omar regional secretary Jay Tyhalisisu.

About an hour after branch members stormed the Sahara Building in Thibault Square, one PEC member called out that he needed to go to the toilet. “Use a bucket”, was the answer thrown back at him.

The ANC members, situated in a pedestrian walkway outside the offices, the foyer and boardroom, sang protest songs and chanted insults.

The door to the ANC office on the fourth floor was damaged when the crowd tried to force their way inside.

The ANC branch members accused Mjongile and his executive committee of changing the candidate lists of city ward councillors provided by the branches for the upcoming local government election, and putting forward their own list of preferred candidates.

The Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) requires that the lists be submitted by Friday. Branches submitted their candidate lists earlier this month but upon receiving correspondence from the PEC notifying them who was standing for election, they noticed that candidates had been changed.

Tuesday’s meeting was a follow-up to a meeting last Thursday, branch member Amanda Mvana said.

Things became uglier inside the boardroom when Tyhalisisu told branch members, who were demanding to see the full complement of nine PEC members, that three PEC members were not answering their phones and were not in the building.

It emerged later that the three absent PEC members had been hiding elsewhere in the building.

The crowd demanded that Tyhalisisu phone Mantashe, who in return told Tyhalisisu to deal with the matter at provincial level.

Branch members insulted Tyhalisisu, accusing him of “being used by the DA”, and he was not allowed out of the overflowing boardroom.

A group of women blocked the doors and told him: “You are not going anywhere until we get the answers.”

The crowd demanded that the names of those they had voted for at branch level be submitted to the IEC as those who would stand for election.

Once police arrived, Mjongile, who had been barricaded in his office on the fourth floor, was escorted to address the crowd in the boardroom. He was shouted down and booed, however.

“We are dealing with this issue per branch because each branch has its own differences,” Mjongile said, before instructing journalists to leave the building.

Mvana said: “We are not going to allow IEC officials to come in our ward if this situation is not solved. We demand that the name that we voted for be reinstated.

“If they cannot reverse the situation there are not going to be elections in our wards.”

Mvana said it was not the first time that candidates voted for by the branches had “been put aside by the PEC”.

The wards in which the candidate nominations have allegedly been changed include wards five, six, 13, 16, 20, 33, 37, 39, 41, 42, 45, 75, 85, 87, 93 and 96.

Nontuthuzelo Dlongo-dlongo said she was elected to run as a candidate for Ward 45, in Gugulethu, Manenberg and Nyanga, at an ANC meeting on February 6. She beat her nearest competitor by 70 votes, but another candidate’s name was selected, she said.

“They changed the names,” Sipho Grootboom, 27, an ANC Youth League member from Ward 40, said.

“I love the ANC, but if they don’t listen we will make the Western Cape ungovernable,” Grootboom said.

A letter from the provincial Cape Agulhas and Overberg district ANC branches, addressed to Mantashe, read: “For the first time in our history, there is a strong sense of defiance developing among the communities in Cape Agulhas zone because of the imposition of the three candidate ward councillors.”

Mjongile said that the party would not be intimidated by “ill-disciplined” and “rogue” members.

“These people were misled by people who have huge ambitions to be ward councillors,” Mjongile said.

“The ANC condemns this kind of action because those members know that there is due process that is followed when there are grievances. The ANC will take action against those ill-disciplined members for breaking the organisation’s property and bringing the party into disrepute.”

Meanwhile, Mantashe told journalists in Johannesburg that the party would submit its lists by Wednesday. Mantashe said that Tuesday’s disruptions, as well as other incidents reported around list processes in Mpumalanga, the North West, the Free State and the Eastern Cape, were “emerging from what you would call the disappointments of the democratic process”.

“Throughout that process, there are people whose ambitions get watered down, and people react in this way.”

He attributed the protests to the ANC’s decision to involve communities in the vetting of candidates for the first time, adding that the DA’s process of using an electoral college was “the easiest thing to do”, but “not as democratic as the ANC’s process”.

“We don’t want our communities to meet their candidates at the poll for the first time,” he said.

Mantashe apologised to those who had not made it on to the candidate lists, saying “expressing your anger is also a healing process”.

He said the ANC would “never stop people from expressing their feelings”, but added that the party would “manage” those feelings. But he said party members who incited violence after they did not make it on to the party’s lists were “the wrong candidates for public representatives”. - Cape Times

NEHAWU 22 March 2011


NEHAWU members from all Further Education and Training Colleges{FETC’S} in Gauteng will gather at the offices of the Higher Education Department tomorrow to handover a memorandum of demands following the failure of the department to solve a myriad of problems facing their sector.

The level of service that workers and students have received from these colleges is embarrassing and unacceptable. As a workers champion and an organization that is dedicated to play a leading role in improving the quality of education at this level we are taking a firm stand against this failure to act from the department.

We demanding more resources to be allocated to these colleges, commitment and transparency from managers and the department to abandon its observer status.The poor management of these institutions especially in the province of Gauteng needs to come to an end because if our calls for action are not heeded we will be forced to escalate our action. It is very sad that the working class and poor students are forced to take to the streets and end up losing valuable learning time in order for their cries for help to be heard in this country.

We will not allow these college managers to treat us like second class citizens and we will not settle for second class education. The union therefore calls on all students, parents and citizens to join in the march because the future of the working class children and their parents is at stake if we fail to act.

Venue: Sol Plaatjie House, Schoeman Street, Pretoria
Time: 11:00 am
Date: 23 March 2011

Members of the media are therefore invited to attend this gathering and report.

Issued by NEHAWU Secretariat Office

For further information, please contact: Sizwe Pamla (NEHAWU Media Liaison Officer) at 011 833 2902 - 082 558 5962 or email:

Visit NEHAWU website:

COSATU NW pledges solidarity support to Aurora workers
Cosatu 23 March 2011

The Congress of South African Trade Unions and its affiliates in the North West Province will be giving solidarity support to the 8 workers (NUM Members ) who were arrested last week on allegations of public violence against Aurora trucks removing the assets at the main plant (Orkney).

The 8 workers spent the weekend in jail for nothing. This is just a campaign led by Aurora to continue to exploit the poor workers including to strip the mine so that at the time of liquidation there must be no assets at the mine

COSATU will be demonstrating with its members during the appearance of the 8 workers at the Orkney magistrate court today, 23 March 2011 from 10h00.

We call on the magistrate to withdraw the case against our members and that Aurora must be told to allow the liquidation case to be completed in august 2011 as they have requested.

For more information call COSATU NW Provincial Secretary Solly Phetoe 0823044055.

NFP supporters assaulted
Sinegugu Ndlovu 21 March 2011

Just four days after political parties committed themselves to peaceful elections, National Freedom Party supporters in Umlazi’s T section were assaulted and their houses damaged when they attempted to elect a candidate for the May 18 local governmentelections.

An armed mob of about 5 000 people went around the T-Section men’s hostel at 2am on Sunday.

Shots were fired and male residents were forced out of their homes and ordered to head to the hostel’s community hall, where the NFP was set to elect its Ward 89 (Umlazi) candidate at 10am.

NFP spokesman S’khumbuzo Zulu said several people had been assaulted and six houses damaged. When The Mercury visited the area, many people said they feared returning home because they would be attacked.

“NFP supporters ran away from their homes because they are afraid. We need to elect a candidate before the cut-off date on Friday,” he said.

“What saddens us is that all political parties signed pledges that these elections would be free and fair … we need to condemn this in the strongest way. The NFP will not be deterred by acts of intimidation.”

Police Brigadier Phindile Radebe said three cases of malicious damage to property were opened. No arrests were made.

“Police were called to the area, where a group of about 5 000 people was mobilising and heading to the community hall. I can’t confirm which political party the group belonged to,” she said.

On Monday, Community Safety and Liaison MEC Willies Mchunu and Co-operative Governance MEC Nomusa Dube would meet political leaders in Estcourt to discuss stability during the build-up to the elections.

Mchunu’s spokesman, Kwanele Ncalane, said a multi-party committee would schedule other areas to visit after going to Estcourt.

“Estcourt has been labelled a hot spot, as instability and a number of killings have been reported … Umsinga, Ulundi, Nongoma, Mandeni and KwaMaphumulo have also been identified as needing attention and focus,” he said.

“I appeal to all political parties and other formations to communicate with their members not to practice such behaviour, because the police will be working tirelessly to ensure that there is calm,” said Mchunu.

KZN violence monitor Mary de Haas was not surprised by the Umlazi incident.

“Hostels historically have fairly conservative rural people in them. It’s early days, but you’ll get a lot of threats in rural areas,” she said.

NFP president Zanele kaMagwaza-Msibi urged NFP supporters not to retaliate.

“It’s sad that there are people who oppose democracy… I urge the IFP leadership to publicly oppose such acts of violence and intimidation … I’m also asking the police to ensure that such violations do not continue,” she said.

IFP spokesman Thulasizwe Buthelezi said the party had nothing to gain from intimidating NFP supporters.

“The NFP must start conducting its own business and learn to drop the IFP from its vocabulary,” he said.

KZN chief electoral officer Mawethu Mosery said the Independent Electoral Commission would meet local political leaders in order to help prevent such incidents from happening again. - The Mercury

The Protest that never made it into the news.

I estimated 10,000 at yesterdays EE march. The Sowetan estimates twice that.
The march stretched at least a‑kilometre‑and‑a‑half. It was CTs biggest
protest in years by far.

Cry for better education
SOWETAN 22 March 2011

ABOUT 20,000 pupils from various schools across Cape Town marched on
Parliament yesterday, appealing to the Department of Education to build
libraries and to adopt "norms and standards" for all schools in the country*

The huge turnout at the Equal Education event rivalled the government's
rally featuring President Jacob Zuma, which took place just 10km away at
Athlone Stadium.

The march was part of Equal Education's campaign to put pressure on the
national education Ministry to build infrastructure, including libraries, at

Activist Zackie Achmat said he was saddened that Basic Education Minister
Angie Motshekga had gone to Zuma's event instead of attending the Equal
Education march.

Only 8 percent of public schools in the country had fully functional
libraries, according to Equal Education spokesperson Yoliswa Dwane.

Dwane also called on Motshekga to keep her promise to come up with minimum
norms and standards for all schools by April 1.

These norms and standards will set out the bare minimum needed by all
schools across the country, and are intended to end the situationin which
some pupils are taught in mud huts and others in "buildings that look like

Dwane said only 7847 schools had municipal flush toilets, while 970 still
did not have any ablution facilities.

She said only 10percent of schools had stocked computer laboratories.

Dwane said the reason for pupils being unable to read, write and count was
because the majority of pupils still experienced poor quality education and
unequal access to resources.

A Grade 12 pupil at Harold Cressy High School, Qhayisani Mxhego, said he
marched because education was a basic right that should be fulfilled by the

"We want all schools to have the same opportunities, and for learners to
have the same access to higher education," said Mxhego.

Another Grade 12 pupil at Hector Pieterson High School said: "We need the
same quality of educators and resources."

The South African Democratic Teachers Union also supported the march to

Sadtu general secretary Mugwena Maluleke said that to have a good pass rate
at the end of the year schools needed to be equipped with quality teachers
and better infrastructure.

"It is the responsibility of the government to ensure quality education at
all schools in this country," Maluleke said.

"We are calling for the Education Department to keep its promise to
implement norms and standards in public schools."‑for‑better‑education

SASCO 18 March 2011

The South African Students’ Congress (SASCO) want to thank the thousands of students that came out in their numbers braving the sun to participate in our Free Education march to the Department of Higher Education and Training in Pretoria today, Friday 18 March 2011. This march was a great success and it confirms that the problems that beset our Higher Education system continue to concern the great majority of young people in our society who are now content not to sit down and do nothing.

Despite the fact that we notified the Department of Higher Education and Training on time, there was no-one to receive our Memorandum of Demands and we had to scrap for anybody we could find to accept this important memorandum. Rather than throw tantrums, we chose to constructively engage the Department of Higher Education and Training for its conspicuous absence.

We are extremely angered and perturbed by the comments attributed to the Minister of Higher Education and Training – Dr Blade Nzimande – at TUT who decided to rubbish the leadership of the student movement for choosing to march rather than continue the already endless and fruitless engagements with him. The paranoia with which the Minister of Higher Education and Training deals with issues in the Higher Education landscape creates a climate of suspicion and mutual distrust rather than measured engagement.

The manner in which the Minister of Higher Education and Training was received by students at the TUT is indicative of the anger and frustration students feel towards the Ministry. Rather than sit in the corner and sulk, any serious revolutionary would reflect on the mistakes he is making and correct them. On our side, we are willing to engage the Minister of Higher Education and Training but he must not think he has the right to lecture us on how we should engage on our campaigns.

We do not need his permission to engage in working class and student struggles. The snail’s pace at which the Department pursues the struggle for the transformation of higher education and lack of implementation of free education is the worst form of anti-communism and a crime against the sons and daughters of the working class and is a betrayal to the struggle.

Contact: Lazola Ndamase, Secretary General - 082 679 8718

COSATU NW to march to labour department office
Cosatu 22 March 2011

The Congress of South African Trade Union and its affiliates has warned the Department of Labour’s regional manager of Christiana in the North West to stop intimidating its members in particular the employees.

It has been reported to the federation that since COSATU PEC took a decision to fight against some Department of Labour inspectors and some regional managers who are friends to the exploiters in particular farmers who are not complying with the law , the Regional Manager is busy intimidating workers and refusing our members to attend COSATU meetings. It is also reported that he is helping white farmers and other capitalists to bash COSATU unions.

Threats, intimidation or victimization by both the regional managers of Christiana and other police will not deter us to expose the enemy of the poor working class.

The attitude of the regional manager towards COSATU members and poor farm workers has now reached a stage where the federation to take the matter to the streets. The same manager is taking legal action to sue COSATU members for raising unfair labour practices and nepotism, which is practiced by the same regional manager.

It is on record that the incident of the school for blind that took place in 2010 was as a results of the poor Department of Labour’s work and its relationship with non complying capitalists.

The Christiana Regional Manager must be told publicly that come the 29 March 2011 COSATU’s protest action against him and his friends is going on with or without threats.

The protest action against the Department of Labour at Mogwase regional office was a huge success to the federation. Once again as the federation we want to warn the same department in this province to stop undermining our workers or COSATU members. The provincial official called Mr. Khunou must be told publicly not to attend any COSATU activities in his live. His attitude towards our members in front of the chief inspector including the regional manager is a clear picture of taking workers lives cheap.

Two of our poor workers who lost their arms were part of the protest action crying tears when they saw some of the inspectors who were friends of the employers during the accident. One of them is Mathapelo whom at the age 25, lost her arm and paid compensation of R1400.00. A young man of 28 lost his arm and paid R380.00. the two cases were confirmrd by the Department of Labour.

COSATU is proceeding with its protest action in all the Department of Labour regional offices. On the 29 March 2011 we are at Christiana Regional Office.

For more information call COSATU North West provincial secretary comrade Solly Phetoe on 082 304 4055.

NUMSA 22 March 2011

The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) notes the declaration of war by Bridgestone South Africa – SA (PTY) LTD for locking-out workers at its two production operations in Brits and Port Elizabeth respectively. This lock-out amounts to provocation and spitting on the face of the workers due wage increases.

This cowardly lock-out of workers by Bridgestone emanates from the unresolved dispute between Bridgestone and Numsa pertaining to the red-circle rate increases set out in the New Trye Manufacturing Industry Bargaining Council collective agreement reached last year, September 28, 2010.

The workers at Bridgestone who are red-circled haven’t seen a wage increase since 2009, yet massive profits generated through their sweat and hard labour is enjoyed by bosses at the helm of the company and their off-springs. The Bridgestone workers children have to go to school bare-footed or on an empty stomach, and at times these children have to share a banana for supper, whilst the bosses children and madams are having prawns for supper.

Bridgestone must pay;

· 9 per cent for Year 1 based on the minimums of their respective grade with back pay given from 1 July 2010 as per the industry.

· 7.5 percent or CPI (Whichever is the greater) based on the minimums of their respective grades for Year 2 and Year 3.

· A cash lump sum equal to the difference between an across the board (ATB) increase on the actual wage rate and the amount received the period 1 July 2010 to 30 June 2011.

As Numsa, we reserve our right to challenge Bridgestone through all avenues available to us as a revolutionary Union.

Contact: Castro Ngobese, National Spokesperson – 073 299 1595

Khayelitsha mob justice in pictures
IolNews 17 March 2011

An alleged robber got a beating of his life when community members caught him robbing young school boys near Nomsa Maphongwana Primary School in Mandela Park, Khayelitsha, Cape Town. Photo: Phandulwazi Jikelo

Electricity staff defended after sit-in
Vivian Attwood and Buhle Mbonambi 13 March 2011

Jose Olivier argues with the security guard who was telling him to vacate the electricity building. Olivier had been waiting for almost two weeks for electricity connection. Photo: Tribune, Sandile Ndlovu

THE eThekwini council has defended its electricity department staff who refused to turn the lights on after eight days of a Durban man’s pleading.

During the dispute, Westville resident José Olivier refused to leave the offices of Durban Metro Electricity at closing time last Saturday, as he had waited eight days for the electricity supply to his rented home to be switched on.

On Friday, municipal spokesman Thabo Mofokeng said in a statement:

“The article (‘Power struggle prompts sit-in’) is not an accurate reflection of events. It suggests that Mr Olivier’s ordeal was entirely caused by municipal officials. The truth of the matter is that the issue involved other parties whose conduct contributed to the delay.”

Olivier, who recently moved from Ladysmith with his 84-year-old, wheelchair-bound mother, was assured by an estate agent that the electricity supply to his new home would be functional by the time he moved in, on February 25. When he found that was not the case, he visited the electricity department on eight successive days without success.

“Every day I was promised the power would be turned on, but it never happened,” he told the Tribune. “Eventually my mother was in such distress that I resorted to emergency measures and refused to leave the offices until they honoured their word.”

Mofokeng said that, unknown to Olivier, the Westville house was R14 000 in rates arrears, R1 338 of which was owed by the previous tenant.

“The agents should have known this as they also represent the owner and under no circumstances should they have assured Mr Olivier that his supply would be on when he arrived from Ladysmith.”

The spokesman claimed that the requisite documents were only produced by the agent to enable registration on March 3.

“It is policy (in terms of) arrear accounts that the council will only register the owner and not a new tenant until the property is cleared of debt,” said Mofokeng. “It is regretted that Mr Olivier had to visit the council offices personally on behalf of the owner to enforce that his meter was connected.”

Mofokeng claimed that supervisor Kay Padayachee had been “unfairly singled out and publicly humiliated by the article”.

He said she had been “sorting out the cashiers’ computers, which had some problem” and had “immediately prompted a staff member in the back office to arrange the connection and keep phoning the reconnector staff to ensure the reconnection happened”.

When reporters from the Sunday Tribune entered the public service foyer at the department, the staff fled to the back of the building.

A young woman employee was then deployed to hold up a piece of paper to block the journalists’ view into the rear office.

Attempts to speak to the supervisor were ignored, but Olivier’s problem was resolved just before the staff left at 1pm.

“Padayachee’s legal rights have been infringed by publishing her name without the facts at hand,” said the spokesman.

Prith Gohn of Wakefields Property said that issues such as Olivier’s were common. “It happens when the previous owners don’t settle their account.

“Another problem is that the landlord ends up having to pay the bill, which is wrong, because the electricity account is between the municipality and the tenant.”

A Re/Max spokesman said: “The municipality is very strict about arrears. When the owner lets the house they must make sure all their documents are in order.”

Meanwhile, another Durban resident has come forward to say that the power supply to her new rental home in Hillcrest was only switched on when she was reduced to weeping at the electricity department’s headquarters

“I went in four days straight, and I had all the documentation they had asked for.

“An arrogant young woman kept sending me away, and wouldn’t even read the paperwork.

“Finally, I couldn’t take it anymore and I just collapsed in tears. Suddenly everyone was scurrying around, and my power was connected in a jiffy.” - Sunday Tribune

Gauteng ANC slams Soweto teachers for protest
Stephen Grootes 15 March 2011

Teachers who took part in Monday’s protest in support of South African Democratic Teachers’ Union (Sadtu) chairperson Moss Senye should be fired, the Gauteng ANC said on Tuesday.

Senye and teacher Ofentse Phehle are facing assault charges for allegedly beating 17-year-old Themba Mabaso at Meadowlands High School in February.

Around 100 Sadtu members demonstrated outside the Meadowlands Magistrate’s Court.

Gauteng ANC provincial secretary David Mukura said Monday’s events were wrong.

“You have teachers who leave learners and they go to a court case of one of their members, they mobilise and... abandon learners,” he said. “Those teachers must be fired.”

Mukura added that the problems in Soweto schools were caused by educators.

“At the centre of the problems in Soweto is the decline in discipline, particularly among the teachers,” he said.

These comments could increase rifts between the ANC and Sadtu.

(Edited by Dennis Georgiannis)

COSATU North West protest action against Department of Labour
Cosatu 17 March 2011

The Congress of South African Trade Unions and its affiliates in Moses Kotane Local will be protesting against the Department of Labour Inspectors who are friends of the exploiters of workers and assisting employers with their racial discrimination at the workplace.

COSATU in the province took a decision to protest with its members and the rest of the workers against the enemy of the poor working class, who are the inspectors of the Department of Labour, the farmers and other employers, in particular at Mogwase factory next to the department.

COSATU members and workers are being oppressed by the Department of Labour inspectors during inspection under the Occupational Health and Safety, Labour Relations and Basic Condition of Employment Acts and the Sectoral Determination for the farm workers.

Some of the inspectors turn out to be negotiators for retrenching poor farm workers by sleeping on one bed with farmers to dismiss workers in particular in the farming areas.

The protest action will take place on 18 March 2011 from Mogwase Township Zone 5 taxi rank to the Department of Labour Regional Office.

Media is invited to the protest action against anti- revolutionaries employed by our own government.

For more information feel free to call COSATU North West Provincial Secretary Comrade Solly Phetoe on 082 304 4055

Invitation to Join the Unemployed People's Movement in an All Night Vigil
UPM 13 March 2011

The Unemployed People's Movement, in Grahamstown, will be holding on all night vigil this Sunday 13 March 2011.

We are holding this vigil at the Cathedral as we know that the police and the municipality will not give us a permit to protest and that they will not dare to attack us in the Cathedral.

We will enter the Cathedral at 7 and stay there until 12 at which point we will move the vigil to Church Square where we will sleep outside. The Church Square may be outside but it is safer than a shack – the square is lit by the street lights, there are no snakes there and while it may rain while we are sleeping outside there rain comes through the leaks in our shacks anyway so it makes no difference being outside.

We will be joined at this vigil by the new student solidarity group Students for Social Justice and we welcome their initiative and their support. All other individuals and groups that support our aims or who wish to protest against the repression and criminalisation of our struggle are welcome to join us.

We had a debate about whether to use black armbands, to show that we are in mourning for our lost freedom and democracy, or red because red is the colour of our movements and our struggle. We have chosen red.

COSATU condemns violence in Cape Town taxi strike
Cosatu 14 March 2011

COSATU condemns the violence in the strike and call upon taxi associations to distance themselves from this violence, and the DA government’s failure to protect commuters and provide an alternative plan, as it has caused untold misery to working families who depend on public transport

The taxi bosses have a right to protest, but they must direct the protest at the Government who is the cause of the problem, so taxis must go and block the City Centre, not prejudice commuters, who can do nothing to solve their problems.

MEC Carlisle has been exposed as a liar when he said they have contingency plans , as there are no additional trains that metro rail can lay on, neither are there additional busses that Golden Arrow has put onto the road. So how are people going to get to work? The government has an obligation to ensure the provision of public transport, because they placed people’s housing so far from work opportunities.

The DA government has no plan and does not care about working class commuters, so they are really leaving them to their own devices to try and get to work. This government has failed to manage this crisis effectively, and has no idea of how to negotiate the political terrain in a democracy.

COSATU again calls for:
Metrorail to put in place extra trains for Monday and Tuesday, and to take the long distance trains and use them in the local system,
The government to use the My Citi busses that are standing gathering dust under the foreshore to transport people from the taxi ranks and to use the auto pax busses to transport people from the more congested stations.

More train coaches to be used for 3rd class commuters, and the first class coaches be reduced.

Security guards to stop intimidating people and treating them like animals for riding in the wrong carriages, when the trains are overcrowded. The train service must run the peak times until 10 am in the morning and 9 pm in the evening to ensure that people are able to get home by train, and they must publish this revised time table by Monday morning.

COSATU calls on the National Government, the city of Cape Town and provincial government and Metrorail to put in place an urgent plan to confront the crisis. They should also include labour, business and the taxi bosses to contribute to finding a solution.

COSATU promises the different levels of Government as well as Metrorail that we will institute a class action claim against them all if any of the commuters are injured or killed on Monday and during the duration of the strike. We call on the police to be deployed more broadly to secure train services as there have previously been renegade criminals attacking the trains during taxi strikes and injuring our commuters.

COSATU will be lodging a complaint with the human rights commission about the failure of the DA to secure the transport safety of commuters, through their disregard. We will use the findings of the Human Rights Commission to lodge a class action against the DA for losses suffered by our people.

For further questions please call COSATU Western Cape Provincial Secretary, Tony Ehrenreich, at 082 77 33 194 or COSATU Western Cape Provincial Chairperson, Jan Kotze, at 0823365703

COSATU North West protest action against the Department of Labour and Hernic Ferrochrome
cosatu 14 March 2011

The Congress of South African Trade Unions and its affiliates have postponed the protest action, which was planned, due to election programme.

Ø Hernic Ferrochrome protest action has been postponed from 11 March 2011 to 14 March 2011 to fight against labour brokers, fight against union bashing, fight against Department of Labour, demanding a full reinstatement of unfairly dismissed workers and the withdrawal of suspended shop stewards. This action is taking place from Ras Primary School at 8H30 – 16H00 on 14 March 2011.

Ø Protest action against Department of Labour at Mogwase Regional office has been postponed from 11 March 2011 to 18 March 2011 to fight against the Department of Labour Inspectors who are friends to the employers in particular those who are assisting farmers to exploit workers and oppress our poor workers.

All other regional action against the Department of Labour will follow on 21-26 March 2011.

For more information feel free to call COSATU NW Provincial Secretary Comrade Solly Nani Phetoe on 082 304 4055

YCL 14 March 2011

The Young Communist League of South Africa (UFasimba) fully supports the strike embarked on by thousands of workers in MTN against the constant use of labour brokers and recruitment agencies in the call centers, to their detriment. The demand put forward by these brave, young workers is what the YCLSA has consistently called for; the ban and immediate termination of contracts with labour brokers.

The strike begins today in KZN. We salute the workers of MTN for taking MTN head on and we also encourage other young workers in the private sector, subjected to this exploitation to stand undeterred against this modern day slavery practice. As the YCLSA we re-itarate our call for the complete ban of labour brokers and urge government to take caution against sophisticated proposals put forward to deviate from heeding this call. As the YCLSA we attend to cases daily of workers subjected to this injustice in their workplace in various sectors of the economy.

We call upon progressive Union organizations organized in this particular sector to assist workers under labour brokers at MTN and other companies, as the practice dismantles the ability of workers to organize. As the YCLSA we fully support the demands of the workers at MTN and we will continue to vigorously campaign against this malicious practice, which feeds off the sweat of the working class and the poor.

Issued by the YCLSA Head Office
Gugu Ndima
National Spokesperson
076 783 1516
Gugu Ndima
+27 76 783 1516

COSATU North West protest action against the Department of Labour and Hernic Ferrochrome
Cosatu 13 March 2011

The Congress of South African Trade Unions and its affiliates will be protesting tomorrow, 14 March 2011 against Hernic Ferrochrome, agains the use of labour brokers, against union bashing, and against the Department of Labour, demanding a full reinstatement of unfairly dismissed workers and the withdrawal of suspended shop stewards. This action is taking place from Ras Primary School at 8H30 – 16H00 on 14 March 2011.

Ø For more information feel free to call COSATU NW Provincial Secretary Comrade Solly Nani Phetoe on 082 304 4055

Strike action hits MTN call centre in South Africa
Uniglobalunion 16 March 2011

WORKERS at one of MTN’s call centres in South Africa went on strike on Tuesday, 14 March to protest against labour brokers.

WORKERS at one of MTN’s call centres in South Africa went on strike on Tuesday, 14 March to protest against labour brokers. Meanwhile, the Communications Workers' Union (CWU) is urging MTN to recognise the union.
According to media reports, the striking workers picketed Mt. Edgecombe MTN branch in KwaZulu-Natal demanding a ban on labour brokers. MTN has two other call centres in Polokwane and Johannesburg.

The workers, who are supplied to MTN by a labour broker, are also demanding that MTN employ them permanently and want their salaries increased.

One of the affected workers told the Independent Online that he had been working as a contract worker for over six years but had not received a salary increase or incentives.

The striking workers were angered by bonuses awarded to MTN staff and not to those employed by recruitment agencies. Medical aid and provident fund are also some of the benefits not extended to contract employees.

The Communications Workers’ Union (CWU) South Africa, which has members in MTN, has constantly accused MTN of deliberately using labour brokers to ensure that the union does not reach the legal unionisation threshold required for recognition by the company.

The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) has an ongoing campaign to ban labour brokers who are undermining unions’ efforts to organise and represent workers.

CWU Statement on MTN call centre strike
Tuesday, 15 March 2011

The Communication Workers Union (CWU) members who are working for MTN in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) having been recruited and supplied by an employment agency/labour broker called Tlhalefang, have with effect from yesterday 14 March 2011 expressed their anger and disgusted by MTN management. The issues in dispute are: Non-payment of a bonus promised by MTN (the employer); Recognition of CWU as their Collective Bargaining Agent and for them to be permanently employed.

The CWU is calling upon MTN to concede to these reasonable demands by our members who have contributed immensely to the profits that the Company has declared in this year’s annual reports.

And further ensure that the union is unconditionally recognised to be able to bargain for the lot of these hard-working workers. Failure to positively respond to our demands would result in calling upon all members in MTN across the breath and length of the Republic of South Africa (RSA) to intensify the action.

Other than the above actions, CWU is calling for Solidarity Action across the Information Communication and Technology (ICT) sector locally and internationally. We further call upon our National Legislature during the process of amending the labour laws to ensure that the Labour brokerage is not regulated as suggested from certain quarters in society, but be totally banned.

The CWU, urge our comrades in CWU to intensify the rolling mass action all over the province of KZN and fight tooth and nail to make sure that they eradicate the exploitation of a man by man by greedy capitalist in our country.

Our government needs to consider the consensus of the majority of our people and workers to totally ban labour brokers. It shows that the working class and the poorest of the poor in this country are undermined and as workers we will make sure that we take this country to a standstill and revolt militantly.

Matankana Mothapo
National Spokesperson

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