Trevor Manuel’s utterances on 11 July 2009 at the World Economic Forum in Cape Town are disgusting

The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (NUMSA) is disgusted by the comments made yesterday, 11 June 2009 by Mr Trevor Manuel at the World Economic Forum against labour. 

Mr Manuel just went off-track and wildly alleged that trade unions are abusing their right to strike on socio-economic issues.

We wish to state on record that no such a strike has taken place recently, or at least ever since Mr Manuel was removed from the Department of Finance as Minister and appointed to head the Planning Commission in the Presidency. Mr Manuel’s fiction of imagination warrants a further clarity. 

Trade unions don’t just lead strikes because they have a right to do so. The same right to strike and other rights including our present democratic dispensation were fought for and partially achieved through strikes.

Trade unions are compelled by obtaining unfavourable capitalist conditions to embark on strikes as the last resort in confronting labour’s challenges. 

If Mr Manuel’s utterances reflect the role of the national democratic state in relation to class struggle between labour and capital then the future of the working class and the poor is doomed.

NUMSA shall not allow our national democratic state to be used in favour of capital at the expense of the workers and the poor.

We reiterate our commitment to the struggle for socialism and a radical National Democratic Revolution (NDR) that places the working class at the centre of its strategy and tactics. 

We regret to condemn in no uncertain terms Mr Manuel’s utterances. 

NUMSA shall forge ahead, traverse the trenches and defy the odds in defence of the workers and the poor. We shall continue building and deploying our unity to confront the challenges that labour is faced with. 

For further information contact

Alex Mashilo: 082 9200 308

Numsa Spokesperson


Numsa News