Numsa 7th National Congress – Your New Leaders



General Secretary

Silumko Nondwangu

Union activism

Before he was absorbed by the labour market, he was active in the activities of Saawu and this had significant influence in his political activism.

Shopfloor struggles

1986: Employed by Germany company, Kromberg and Schubert. Elected as a Micwu shop steward (one of the unions that merged to form Numsa in 1987). He served as divisional executive member of Micwu and was part of the unity talks between Micwu and Naawu.

Part of the delegation which launched Numsa. During this period, he was arrested for his involvement in trade union activities.


He was elected as a secretary of the East London local. Dismissed by the company for attending a Cosatu congress in 1989.

1989-1990: Volunteered and assisted in Numsa

1990: Appointed as a local organiser in Queenstown local. Appoints as a regional education officer (REO) for the Border region.

1995 Nov: After the merger of Border and E Cape regions, he served as a REO for both regions

1996: He was elected as a regional secretary of the E Cape region, a position he held up until 2000.

2000: Elected as the general secretary of the union.

2004: Re-elected as the general secretary of the union.

Community involvement

He was expelled from school and also banished from the former Ciskei regime. He was actively involved in the structures that preceded the formation of the SA Youth Congress (Sayco). He subsequently served as a chairperson of the Sayco Mdantsane branch. He was also an executive member of the Mdantsane Residents Association. After the unbanning of political formations, he served as a chairperson of the Mdantsane ANC Youth League. Served as a secretary of the ANC Mdantsane branch. He was also actively involved in the establishment of the SACP structure in his area.


Member of the REC. Part of the East London Development Forum. Served in the East London Education forum. Represented Cosatu in key negotiations of the federation in the province. Represented the federation in the province at the alliance level.


Deputy General Secretary

Bheki Magagula

Shopfloor struggles

1987: Employed by Lascon Lighting (now called U-Lite)

1989: Elected as a shop steward

1990: Member of the Local Education Committee

1991: REC delegate

1993: Employed by Numsa

1995: Elected as a Numsa regional secretary

2000: Elected as Numsa deputy general secretary

2004: Re-elected as Numsa deputy general secretary

In the community

1993: Chairperson of the Sanco branch. Member of the SACP.


National Treasurer

Philemon Shiburi

Shopfloor struggles

1985: Recruited into the union which was then the Metal and Allied Workers Union (Mawu) in 1985.

1986: Elected as a shop steward but was not an active shop steward.

1992: Became active and attended all union activities.

1994: Elected as a local chairperson at Johannesburg North local, a position he held until 1999.

1999: His region, Wits Central West, elected him as a Central Committee delegate.

2000: Was elected as regional chairperson of Wits Central West region. Even during apartheid, his company QD Electronics, released him for trade union activities.

Community involvement

Involved with the SACP in Alexandra. SACP wanted him to take an executive position but he turned it down because of his Numsa activities. He now stays in Marlborough and is vice-chairperson of the Marlborough Civic Association. They are dealing with water, electricity and other matters.

Cosatu involvement

The Cosatu Alexandra branch is not functioning. Shiburi, with the assistance of the SACP, is trying to bring together all Cosatu affiliates to revive the Cosatu local. At the moment only three unions attend.

Liesbet Mohutsiwa