Cosatu endorses Zuma for second term

2012-10-17 20:53
Mmanaledi Mataboge
Trade-union federation Cosatu will back ANC president Jacob Zuma to be re-elected for a second term at Mangaung in December in the spirit of “both continuity and change.

Cosatu has named Zuma, deputy president Kgalema Motlanthe and secretary general Gwede Mantashe, but excluded deputy secretary general Thandi Modise, treasurer general Mathews Phosa and chairperson Baleka Mbete from the list of preferred leadership candidates.

In our assessment the other comrades have not assisted us in taking forward the Polokwane resolutions, in particular the national treasurer and the deputy secretary general, Cosatu said in a statement today.

Modise and Phosa are allies of former ANC Youth League leader Julius Malema who has led the charge in campaigning for Zuma to be replaced by Motlanthe.

In identifying this collective we are not in any way suggesting that it is perfect with no weaknesses of its own, collectively or individually.

We however believe that this nucleus has the best possibility under the circumstances to take us forward in the manner as categorically stated by our Congress.

The Cosatu congress called for an ANC leadership that is
decisive, coherent and focused, and that is not afraid to challenge the neo-liberal orthodoxies.

Cosatu's support is, however, not unconditional this time around, as it was in 2007.

The federation has outlined its conditions for support, topped by the
Lula moment,  a programme of economic transformation and job creation aimed at improving people's lives.

In exchange for support, Cosatu would want to secure a commitment to:
» A package of interventions to advance a radical economic shift, including specific commitments to align macro-economic policies, and all institutions of state, to the agenda of promoting decent work, and agreed interventions to dramatically scale up the state's role in strategic sectors of the economy;

» A review of all appointments  to strategic positions in line with the need to effect these changes in strategic Ministries, including Treasury, the Reserve Bank and state owned enterprises;

» A coherent labour market, wages and incomes policy, including a legislated national minimum wage, social protection measures that include a grant for the unemployed; and

» An agreement on a protocol on the alliance and governance to ensure effective implementation of ANC and alliance policies, and co-ordination with the work of government.

Cosatu also wants legislation to govern conflicts of interest in the state and the movement and a policy to prevent those convicted of certain types of offenses from holding leadership positions.

The federation has resolved to abandon their attitude of
trust which did not benefit them after Polokwane because of a "sorry track record of non-implementation."

Cosatu now wants an agreement before the Mangaung congress that the federation's demands will be met.

Once the ANC Conference is over there is the danger that the urgency for such an accord would be lost.

Therefore, if the alliance agreement were to have the necessary impact, its key elements would preferably need to be agreed before December, for endorsement at the Mangaung conference.

Cosatu has compiled a criteria to guide the federation in selecting leaders:
» Someone committed to a radical national democratic revolution and thorough transformation of society;

» A proven commitment to the ANC-led tripartite alliance and asserting the position of the working class as a primary motive force;

» Commitment to the unity of the ANC, the alliance and the democratic movement ;

» Commitment to make this decade truly a decade of workers and the poor;

» The leader should have an anti-imperialist and internationalist character ;

» Have a struggle record and political experience; and

» Advance good governance and fight corruption.

Cosatu will also hold discussions with the ANC leaders and its structures to ensure none of their preferred leaders contest each other.

Said Cosatu:
Our intervention does not seek to endorse any slate politics or divide the ANC. On the contrary we seek to achieve a more united ANC where a bitter leadership contest must be avoided so that we create more space for policy debate to shape the content of the second phase of the transition for a radical transformation of our economy.

Cosatu's political commission of the CEC will identify Cosatu members to propose for the ANC's national executive committee.