ANC not worried about prospects of Zuma being booed by some Cosatu members

Zizi Kodwa says this is not about Cosatu’s resolution around Zuma as president but about their acceptance of his role as leader of the ANC.

President Jacob Zuma addressing Freedom Day celebrations in Manguzi on 27 April 2017. Picture: GCIS.

JOHANNESBURG – The African National Congress (ANC) says it’s not worried that members of some Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) unions may boo or disrupt President Jacob Zuma’s speech when he addresses the federation’s main May Day rally on Monday.

Both Cosatu and the ANC confirmed on Friday that Zuma will speak at the rally despite the fact at least three Cosatu unions said he should not attend the event.

The unions said that it would send a confusing message for Zuma to go to the event when Cosatu has taken a resolution that Zuma should step down as president.

The ANC’s Zizi Kodwa said this is not about Cosatu’s resolution around Zuma as president but about their acceptance of his role as leader of the ANC.

“It has got nothing to do with a view that’s expressed in public about their preference and about their view of the president. That issue is being dealt with internally within the alliance structures.”

While Cosatu’s Sizwe Pamla said they can’t tell the ANC who to send to the rally.

“We will never accept the situation where the ANC in future or any other alliance partner will send us an invitation and then put conditions to say ‘we invite you on condition to you one, two or three.’”

Pamla said this decision to allow Zuma to speak at their main rally on Monday does not contradict their resolution that he should step down as president.

“We do have a standing decision coming from the special CEC, but that decision was never extended to mean the president should step down from his position as the leader of the ANC.”

Kodwa said Zuma will go to Bloemfontein.

“Cosatu affirmed and confirmed that they areexpecting the president. Of course, affiliates of Cosatu have got a right to their views, but it does not make it a view of Cosatu.”

Cosatu President Sdumo Dlamini has been heavily criticised for attending Zuma’s birthday celebrations, despite the fact his federation has said Zuma should leave the Union Buildings.

(Edited by Leeto M Khoza)