Saftu elective conference enters third day

The outcome of a vote for or against the reinstatement of four office bearers – 376 delegates voted against the motion beating out 325 others who voted in favour - has no doubt been read as a signal of what’s to come.

Zwelinzima Vavi Image: Bertram Malgas/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - As the South African Federation of Trade Unions' (Saftu’s) elective conference enters its third day - general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi and his supporters have defeated a National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) sponsored a motion for the reinstatement of four national office bearers.

Yesterday, 376 delegates voted against the motion beating out 325 others who voted in favour.

The four had been removed from office after they sent Vavi a notice of intention to place him on suspension in March – he had been accused of financial misconduct.

Voting for new office bears is expected to take place on Wednesday.

The outcome of a vote for or against the reinstatement of four office bearers – has no doubt been read as a signal of what’s to come.

So serious was this motion that Tuesday night Numsa delegates took issue with the electoral commission over the outcome. They said the numbers didn’t add up to the credentials adopted for this conference.

The commission explained that it printed 746 ballots to make room for cancellations but only made use of 692.

Meanwhile, Saftu has assessed the impact of media reports about its squabbles – describing this in its organisational report as damaging to workers’ confidence in Saftu.

It also warns that Saftu now risks sliding into bureaucratic trade unionism in which struggles and money play a key role in its divisions.

The conference will close on Thursday.