- Mashinini says more still needs to be done
ANC provincial chairman Sam Malambule Mashinini says much more still needs to be done to promote and protect workers’ rights.
Delivering a message to mark Workers’ Month celebrations, Mashinini said the ANC has worked tirelessly to ensure the development of progressive labour policies aimed at safeguarding and promoting workers’ rights.
“Since 1994, the ANC government has created a policy and legislative environment which promotes favourable working conditions for the workers. We have also made some serious strides in facilitating good relations between employer and employee in the workplace. The ANC believes that, whilst a lot of progress has been made, much still needs to be done to improve the conditions and welfare of the workers and the poor,” he noted.
The International Workers’ Day is used to raise pertinent issues affecting workers and the poor, he added.
The provincial chair said from the days of the struggle against apartheid, the ANC has continued to fight side by side with workers.
He hailed the Free State provincial government for initiating the employment of cleaning and security services through its ‘insourcing’ programme since 2009.
“Through our Insourcing Employment Strategy, we piloted the securing of cleaning and security functions at public service institutions like hospitals and buildings accommodating government offices.”
The ANC is also proud that President Cyril Ramaphosa had signed the National Minimum Wage Act, a move that will benefit approximately six million lowly paid workers, said Mashinini.
The new law sets the national minimum wage at R3500 and came into effect on January 1 this year.
“The 54th conference of the ANC held in Nasrec in 2017 found that the gap between incomes of executives and workers remains very high. The conference further resolved that the minimum wage must be implemented as a matter of urgency to impact positively on the lives of low paid workers,” noted Mashinini.
He added the ANC will continue to work with unions to improve the conditions of workers while advancing the developmental agenda.
Mashinini also thanked Cosatu, which is a partner of the ANC in the tripartite alliance, for helping the party in its election campaign.
Quoting the late president of the ANC Oliver Reginald Tambo, Mashinini said the alliance with Cosatu is a living organism that has grown out of the struggle.
“As a disciplined force of the left, the ANC has always been biased towards the working class and the poor. It is not by accident that the ANC is in a revolutionary alliance with both the SA communist party and Cosatu as working class formations in our country,” he asserted.
The International Workers’ Day was first celebrated in 1890 by various worker organisations around the globe. These organisations demanded an eight-hour working day for all workers.