Cosatu’s mass strike to also focus on private sector, big banks

Marches are planned in each of the country’s nine provinces, with the largest expected in the Johannesburg city centre.

A general view of the Cosatu House in Johannesburg where protesters will gather before making their way to the City of Johannesburg office in Braamfontein. Picture: @_cosatu/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG - As police urge protesters taking part in Wednesday’s national anti-state capture strike to respect the law, Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) says the mass action is focused not only on the state but also the private sector, big banks and the Chamber of Mines.

The Cosatu-led strike is supported by the African National Congress (ANC) in Gauteng and the South African Communist Party (SACP).

Marches are planned in each of the country’s nine provinces, with the largest expected in the Johannesburg city centre.

Cosatu’s Dumisani Dakile says the strike is aimed at accelerating the process of setting up an independent judicial commission of inquiry into state capture but it’s also to protect workers’ rights.

He says that is why a memorandum will be delivered to banks that were found to be colluding, as well as the Chamber of Mines.

“Where we will then be demanding a moratorium on retrenchments and also in terms of the establishment of the convening of a job summit to look at the structuring of the economy and how to ensure that we create jobs in our country.”

Dakile says that Cosatu and the SACP will again be calling for the removal of President Jacob Zuma.

But the ANC in Gauteng says despite the fact it’s joining the march, it does not support that call.

Meanwhile, travellers have been urged to allow for delays and longer travel time to airports in light of Cosatu’s nationwide strike.

The Airports Company South Africa (Acsa) says that it’s not aware of specific action focused on airports but that it is possible there could be delays that affect airport access.


The City of Cape Town says that it has granted Cosatu a permit for a gathering of no more than 10,000 people.

Demonstrators are expected to march from Keizersgracht at 11:30 and move towards Parliament.

Protesters are also expected to demonstrate outside the Passenger Rail Agency's offices in the Cape Town CDB.

Metrorail's Riana Scott says that trains will be operating normally and it is not expecting any workers to participate in the march, whether they are unionised or not.

Additional reporting by Monique Mortlock.

(Edited by Zamangwane Shange)