Hamba Kahle Comrade Molefe Elias ‘LEE’ Modige

14 November 2012

The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) sends its deepest condolences to our red and class orientated South African Commercial, Catering and Allied Workers Union (SACCAWU) and the broader liberation movement headed by the African National Congress (ANC) on the sad departure of SACCAWU Head of Organising, Campaigns, Collective Bargaining Unit (OCCB) comrade Molefe Elias ‘Lee’ Modige.

The imperatives of nature, like thieves, have robbed us of one of the longest servant of the working class; a product of workers struggles for national liberation struggle is no more.

A great son of the working class has ceased to breathe, a graduate of the University of the Struggle – Robben Island has left us to join the immortal living in ideas.

Comrade Modige departed from the land of the living to the land of the departed on the early hours of Monday 12 November 2012, on his tranquil slumber at home.

Comrade Modige represents the last generation of former Robben Island cadres deployed by both the vanguard party of the working class, the South African Communist Party (SACP) and the African National Congress (ANC) to build and strengthen the progressive trade union movement under worker’s clarion call of ‘one country, one federation, one sector, one union’.

Comrade Modige was a revered organiser, he towered above the rest as an negotiator par excellence, a working class thinker of note and a fountain of inspiration.

He departs at a time wherein COSATU and the rest of its affiliates must return back to the basics of revolutionary trade unionism by serving workers interests and inspirations.

In his honour we should re-ignite revolutionary activism by build working class from below to contest the hegemony of capital at the point of production.

He sadly leaves us behind whereby the owners of monopolies and greedy bosses’ are arrogantly undermining worker’s hard won right to collective bargaining.

His unexpected departure is a sad blow to the working class amidst the ideological onslaught meted by white monopoly capital against the property-less and exploited class in South Africa and elsewhere.

Comrade Modige’s life will inspire many generations, a glittering example of a courageous servant of the workers, personifying the noblest principles and finest traditions of the working class movement – selflessness as against self-centredness, collective leadership as against personality cult, solidarity as against survival of the fittest, sacrifice for common good as against greed and individualism.

In his memory and honour we shall defend the working class character of the ANC as we go to Mangaung.

We shall go to Mangaung to elect a working class bias leadership collective of the ANC.

We will elect a leadership collective that will deal with the failed neoliberal policies and the untransformed Apartheid Capitalist economy, which has made South Africa to deserve an Olympic Gold Medal for being the most unequal society on earth.

Wherever you are in the nooks and crannies of the universe, you are now in the capable hands of other celebrated stars of the working class.

Issued by NUMSA National Office Bearers (NOB’s)


Castro Ngobese, National Spokesperson – 083 627 5197