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Cape Town - Cosatu members should respect internal processes instead of running to the media when they are unhappy, its president S’dumo Dlamini said on Tuesday.

“You participate internally there, then when you feel defeated you go outside and you form yourself (in the media),” he said at the joint National Education, Health, and Allied Workers' Union (Nehawu) shop steward council in Cape Town.

“You don't say that (you are a political authority of nine unions) and still hope to be belonging in an organisation that you love so much.”

The Congress of SA Trade Unions president was referring to a news briefing held last week by nine Cosatu affiliates who called for the reinstatement of suspended general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi and for a special congress.

They are the Communication Workers' Union, the Democratic Nurses' Union of SA, the Food and Allied Workers' Union, the National Union of Metalworkers of SA, the Public and Allied Workers' Union of SA, the SA Commercial and Catering Workers' Union, the SA Football Players' Union, the SA Municipal Workers' Union, and the SA State and Allied Workers' Union.

Dlamini advised all affiliates not to “out-organise” other unions and hope to remain intact.

“If you go and do that in another union, it may be that union that does the same to you at points where they know you are weakened.”

He said members had an equal responsibility to defend Cosatu and remain united.

“All of us, let us respect internal processes of the federation. When decisions are taken at the central executive committee level, those decisions are binding to all of us.”