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Judgment reserved in case against Numsa workers fired over struggle song

Manufacturing firm Duncanmec dismissed the workers for singing the song, which loosely translates to ‘my mother rejoices when I hurt a boer’.

FILE: Supporters of Numsa. Picture: @Radio702/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG - The Constitutional Court has reserved judgment in a case in which the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) workers were fired for singing a struggle song, which included references to harming the "boer" during a strike in April 2013.

Manufacturing firm Duncanmec dismissed the workers for singing the song, which loosely translates to “my mother rejoices when I hurt a boer”.

The company lost the case against the dismissals at the CCMA and then at the Labour Court and was ordered to reinstate all nine workers.

The firm had argued before the Constitutional Court that struggle songs have no place in the work environment and it was justified in dismissing the employees.

Speaking after judgment was reserved, Numsa spokesperson Phakamile Hlubi-Majola said the company is abusing the legal system to silence the workers.

“We’ve won this case at the CCMA and Labour Court. The company was denied leave to appeal, but instead of doing the right thing and reinstating our members they’ve refused. And now they’re wasting the Constitutional Court’s time with this nonsense.”

(Edited by Zamangwane Shange)

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