Union marches get under way

A protester at Cosatu’s national stayaway in Cape Town on Wednesday.
Image: Esa Alexander/Sunday Times

Lilian Ngoyi Street is awash in red as union members march from Burgers Park to the National Treasury in Pretoria.

A sizeable protest is also under way in Cape Town as marchers prepare to hand over a memorandum at the Western Cape legislature during the national day of action called by trade unions on Wednesday.

Their demands include:

  • that action be taken against corruption;
  • drastic action to address SA’s massive unemployment increase;
  • a wage increase in the public service, and
  • increased action against gender-based violence (GBV).

Thabang Sonyethi, provincial deputy chairperson of Cosatu in Gauteng, said the protesters comprise essential workers who want change in the country.

“Our female workers are suffering at their workplaces and due to violence in our society, and our government is riddled with  corruption reports every week. These are some of the things we want to talk about,” he said.

A sea of red as union members march in Pretoria.
Image: Shonisani Tshikalange/TimesLIVE

“We are going to the Treasury to highlight the problems. In all of this, they are telling municipalities not to give salary increases to employees.

“We want the department of employment and labour to mediate between the workers and government. The department is supposed to intervene when employers are eating the money of workers.”

The Pretoria protesters will submit the memorandum at the National Treasury and then head to the department of employment and labour.

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