– Beyond rhetoric and claimed ideology, sense must prevail –
In the aftermath of the NUMSA Special Congress organised in December 2013 and its long anticipated resolutions the question becomes now where to for ‘NUMSA’ and Vavi.
I hold that each of the resolutions will fall one after the other as of less impact and showing in rhetoric of claim. NUMSA’s claim to have this power to change COSATU’s position on the Alliance is proving empty.
Secondly with the ANC accepting NUMSA’s claim of not supporting it as for the 2014 National Elections as immaterial since union members don’t engage in block voting but are free to choose what party to vote for, the claimed might of a NUMSA is proving vacuous.
On the Vavi suspension issue, NUMSA is and has lost the plot and more and more confirms the fact that all the recent rhetorical actions and noise was around Vavi and not the claimed Workers- Cause.
Vavi is history in COSATU context with the nine charges and will never be trusted as a COSATU leader in COSATU leadership thus he is compromised and perhaps even ostracized by his own actions and political ambitions.
We learn NUMSA has since the ANC – manifesto prove to have second thoughts on not supporting the ANC and is meeting today with COSATU to discuss the implications of its emotional special congress.
Perhaps NUMSA’s R8m support of the ANC was exaggerated as significant which now proves a speck and hardly a bargain instrument.
Perhaps NUMSA will realise, as we always have known it needs COSATU more than what COSATU needs a NUMSA. Equally, COSATU will not budge on Vavi.
Perhaps the workers in NUMSA was misled by a group of leaders duly elected but not duly following the workers cause but rather personality cultic worship laced with misplaced ideology rhetoric.
Maybe NUMSA will finally realise how small it is in the context of SA politics and opt to focus on workers issues and not political governance.
Parties contest elections with the aim to govern, organised labour exist to organise workers for the workers -cause we must desist a conflation and confusion of the two only because one claims to have a membership in excess of 300000.
Organised labour is not structured for block political voting in national or municipal elections context and therefore should not attempt portraying such. Claiming that type of block voting power is an absolute sophistry.
Members of organised labour have and continue to enjoy their constitutional right and privilege to opt for whom to vote in a political elections year. Thus to pretend NUMSA is a united front ready to start a party to lead the workers cause in politics of governance is misleading to say the least.
Either increasingly NUMSA will sober up or they will sober up on an elected leadership that has not always acted in mandate embrace.
Whichever way this pans out NUMSA’s leadership has bitten off more than what it can chew and is quickly realising this. It is easy to become emotional and shout slogans, spit threats, prove cocky with your two pence (R8m) in attack of others. It is not so easy to persuade the others of your true cause when they already know the real deal behind NUMSA’s behaviour in recent times has little to do with ideological incongruence of NDP or any policy but a conviction that Vavi can and should be deputy president of SA. From where this conviction, perhaps only those in NUMSA who endorses an emerging form of personality cult worship knows.
For Vavi, either he soon will knock on the EFF’s door or he will reconsider what I called in an earlier note “an offer at prime time.” The only difference now will be he will ask for deployment and thus will not just be compromised but will have no room to dictate, not that he ever had.
The moral of the story is don not confuse media driven campaigns as more powerful than what they are. Sitting behind a microphone and getting flashy cameras does not automatically translate to political power that can alter the SA political landscape.
Maybe Vavi and NUMSA were just used no different to a Malema in a previous year by a lusty media who essentially hell-bent on being anti-establishment at any costs. This media has not contributed to the democratic transformation of an SA. It rather has opted to be the opposite of what we strive for in SA.
Where to now for “NUMSA” and their confirmed political chosen leader Vavi?
Humble pie, subdued utterances who knows!
Clyde N. Ramalaine