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Cosatu May Day rally underway in Athlone

The day’s activities started with a protest march to Athlone Police Station to register workers’ concerns about the devastating effects of crime and violence on the Cape Flats communities.

ANC supporters attend a Cosatu May Day rally at Athlone Stadium, Cape Town. Picture: Bertram Malgas/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - The Congress of South African Trade Unions’ (Cosatu) May Day rally is underway at Athlone Stadium in Cape Town.

Hundreds of workers and Cosatu supporters gathered in Cape Town to celebrate Workers Day in one of several rallies across the country.

The rally at Athlone Stadium is being attended by several senior African National Congress (ANC) leaders like treasurer general Paul Mashatile and South African Communist Party (SACP) deputy general-secretary and ANC NEC member Jeremy Cronin.

The day’s activities started with a protest march to Athlone Police Station to register workers’ concerns about the devastating effects of crime and violence on the Cape Flats communities.

It’s been billed as a Workers’ Day event, but with just a few more days to go before the legal cut off for electioneering, the ANC will be sharing the stage with their tripartite alliance partners in a bid to win more votes.

Cosatu provincial secretary Malvern de Bruyn said they would use the rally to highlight the plight of exploited workers.

Speakers have used Wednesday’s May Day rally in Cape Town to urge South Africans to come out in their numbers to vote the ANC back into power at next week’s polls.

Cronin told hundreds of supporters that only the ANC was capable of turning around the country’s misfortunes.

“The first message that we’re conveying, as the communist party, is let’s vote overwhelmingly for the ANC. Let’s say to the governing party, under President [Cyril] Ramaphosa, carry forward with rolling back state capture.”

Cronin also touched on labour issues commending the ANC for putting workers first and getting the National Minimum Wage Bill signed into law.

“Let’s make sure that the national minimum wage is implemented. It’s on paper and agreed to, but let’s make sure it’s implemented.”

‘ANC THE ONLY PARTY FOR YOU’

ANC treasurer-general Paul Mashatile said the ruling party was still the only party that can liberate workers.

Mashatile told supporters to vote for the ANC as it was the only party for them.

“We have to vote on 8 May so that the ANC comes in strong. We don’t want the ANC to win by a small margin.”

He said the people of the Western Cape had had enough of the Democratic Alliance.

“We are tired of being governed by the DA. We now want the ANC back to govern.”

Cosatu national treasurer Frieda Oosthuysen added that only the ANC had fought for workers.

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