JOHANNESBURG - South Africa's African National Congress said on Monday it was relieved that thousands of direct and indirect jobs had been saved after financially troubled retail group Edcon reached a deal with creditors.

Edcon has secured 2.7 billion rand in new cash and rent deductions as part of a recapitalisation plan.

The ANC in Western Cape concurred with the South African Clothing and Textile Workers’ Union that this agreement had averted a "job massacre" in the clothing industry, secretary Faiez Jacobs in a statement.

“We in the Western Cape know from bitter experience how devastating job losses in the clothing industry can be," Jacobs said.

"Our once thriving clothing industry is gone, and with it the jobs of thousands of workers who worked in Woodstock, Salt River and Observatory."

Edcon, the largest non-food retailer in South Africa which owns Edgars, Jet and CNA, has been struggling for the last few years in the face of an onslaught of cheap foreign imports and a move by consumers to e-commerce. 

Last December, CEO Grant Pattison said the board had approved the structure of a proposed recapitalisation plan and in response lenders have extended waivers to allow time for implementation.

- African News Agency (ANA), Editing by Stella Mapenzauswa