Dlamini slams 'corrupt' rival union

Sidumo Dlamini says the leaders of Sapsu want to liquidate Cosatu.

Cosatu President Sidumo Dlamini. Picture: Reinart Toerien/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) President Sidumo Dlamini claims the former leader of the South African Democratic Teachers Union and now leader of the South African Public Service Union (Sapsu), Thobile Ntola, is corrupt.

Ntola last week launched the union that he says is inspired by the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa).

Numsa was voted out of Cosatu last month by 33 votes to 24 and the decision has since exposed the rift between rival affiliates.

Dlamini said he believes Ntola and the other leaders of this new union simply want to liquidate the federation.

"Sapsu intends to liquidate Cosatu but they will not win."

At the same time,the new metalworkers union hoping to take the Numsa's place in Cosatu says it has already organised close to 10,000 members at 200 companies across the country.

The Liberated Metalworkers Union of South Africa (Limusa) last week officially registered with the Labour Department.

The union is headed by Numsa's former president Cedric Gcina.

The union's establishment is seen as an attempt to replace Numsa within Cosatu to entice workers sympathetic to the African National Congress (ANC) back to the federation.

Numsa has brushed off Limusa's formation but Gcina has said they're making significant progress.

Last week, Cosatu secretary general Zwelinzima Vavi reiterated the trade union federation is headed for a major split unless its alliance partners can intervene.

He says while he's at odds with Cosatu he's not going nowhere.

The metalworkers union said a report claiming to be an intelligence document showing that it wants to destabilise the country, is part of a pattern of using intelligence forces to deal with legitimate campaigns.

The document, titled Exposed - Secret Regime Change Plot to Destabilise South Africa, features the names of Numsa officials and civil society leaders that have associated with the union's united front.

It also accused the union of inviting experts to refine the so-called regime change plot at its international symposium on socialism held in Boksburg earlier this year.