Cosatu gets legal advice on secrecy bill
Trade union federation Cosatu has referred the Protection of State Information Bill to its lawyers for advice.
At its end-of-year press conference, Cosatu general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi said the secrecy bill, if passed unamended, would be a serious attack on every South African’s constitutional rights.
“The act must never be used to classify information which exposes corruption or other crimes as ‘secret’ or criminalise whistle-blowers who reveal such information,” Vavi said.
Vavi expressed concern about ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe’s organisational report, which dubbed the union federation ill-disciplined.
In his report, Mantashe said Cosatu was the only alliance partner that sees the democratic government as worse or the same as the apartheid regime.
Vavi said this was not true and that Cosatu had never made such a statement.
However, Vavi dismissed suggestions that there were cracks in the tripartite alliance.
“We’re not worried about the alliance collapsing anytime soon,” he said.
Vavi said the alliance was in good shape and will be stronger in 2013.
He promised Cosatu would respond to the ANC’s Mangaung resolutions after studying them.
Vavi’s deputy, Bheki Ntshalintshali, said it was too early to judge ANC leaders re-elected in Mangaung.
“We live in hope that they’ll be able to steer the country,” Ntshalintshali said.
Vavi has urged Gauteng motorists not to register for e-tolls or buy e-tags and to make the system unworkable.
Also a top priority for Cosatu next year will be fighting for labour brokers to be scrapped.
Vavi says 2012’s wave of spontaneous strikes show that millions of poor and marginalised South Africans are losing patience and have begun their own militant fight against poverty, unemploment and inequality and for economic transformation.