Vavi’s Numsa address wrong: Cosatu

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The Star

Zwelinzima Vavi, seen on the screen of an audience member's laptop, speaks on the second day of Numsa's special congress in Boksburg. Picture: Matthews Baloyi

Johannesburg - Cosatu president S'dumo Dlamini has advised the trade union federation's suspended general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi to stop addressing gatherings until his disciplinary hearing is over.

“It is in his (Vavi's) best interest to respect internal processes that are ongoing,” Dlamini told reporters in Johannesburg on Thursday.

“He should not be excited by the clapping of hands which are short-lived.”

Vavi was put on special leave earlier this year after having an affair with a junior Congress of SA Trade Unions employee. The National Union of Metalworkers of SA, an ally of Vavi, is challenging Cosatu's decision to suspend Vavi in court.

During his address at Numsa's congress on Wednesday, which was the memorial lecture of former Numsa president Mthuthuzeli Tom, Vavi said the African National Congress-led government had failed to decrease unemployment, poverty, and inequality.

“It is obvious that the post-Polokwane administration has spectacularly failed to reverse the crisis of unemployment. It is also obvious that this administration has failed to deliver on one of the basic promises of the 52nd conference of the ANC, which was to create decent work.”

Vavi said he was speaking as someone who knew Tom and not as the suspended general secretary of Cosatu.

Tom, he said, would have urged the Numsa to play a leading role in ensuring South Africa did not become a “predator state”.

Reacting to the address, Dlamini said Vavi should think twice before accepting invites to speak at functions.

“It can not be correct that on one side you're part of the process but on the other side you then act as if you're not prepared to reconcile with anybody,” he said.

Dlamini said Vavi should behave and conduct himself in a manner that when the dust settled, he could still be able to look them in the eye and be able to work with them.

“Don't behave like you don't care about tomorrow. Let's handle matters in a mature way and not act like we don't care,” he said.


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