Numsa youth meet ANCYL, YCL and Cosas

The Numsa youth forum in Ekurhuleni met the ANC Youth League, the Young Communist League and the Congress of South African Students on November 23 and 24 last year.

The forum agreed to hold regular meetings to formulate and implement a Progressive Youth Alliance (PYA) programme.

Cosas asked the union to help them build structures in all high schools in the region, and to conduct political education. They also asked Numsa to work with them in transforming the education system.

The Cosas representatives pledged to support all our programmes. The Numsa representatives resolved to find an opportunity to educate them about trade unions.

It should be noted that Cosas managed to mobilise members for a march on October 27 last year to protest the youth wage subsidy. They also attended the PYA meeting, which indicates the close relationship Numsa has with the provincial leadership of Cosas.

The ANCYL sent only one member of the regional executive committee and did not support the march, indicating that its relationship with Numsa is not very impressive. However, the regional secretary of the youth forum managed to arrange a meeting with the ANCYL office-bearers.

The ANCYL comrades have promised to call us if they have programmes that need our backing and to support our programmes. We are looking forward to working together with them.

The relationship between us and the YCL is a good one; they attended both our PYA and the march.

Both organisations agreed to work together. The YCL representatives asked that our members should join the YCL and we agreed. Both organisations also agreed to support each other’s programmes.

The regional deputy chair of the youth forum has attended one programme of the YCL in Katlehong.

There is no structure of the South African Students Congress (Sasco) in the region. The Numsa leadership intends to form a relationship with the provincial leadership of Sasco and we hope that by next year we will be working together.

We have not yet done anything about youth unity, but we are looking forward to building a relationship, as it is a strategic structure.

The youth forum has agreed to take part in street committees, so that we can find the space to put forward Numsa’s position on socio-economic issues. Numsa must take part in municipal ward committees after the next local government elections.

The youth forum attended several meetings with international organisations. It held workshops with IG Metal, Industry-aLL and the WFTU.

The youth forum has resolved to implement Numsa’s positions on worker-to-worker contact in Africa and globally, and to encourage shop stewards of national companies to have communication and exchange programmes.

It has also resolved that one or two regional office-bearers must form part of the delegations to countries where regions are deployed.

Apart from hosting a successful PYA meeting, we attended all meetings scheduled for the youth forum and visited few locals, in keeping with our programme. The forum also called a regional executive committee meeting to prepare for our national congress.

It is hard for us to hold meetings of regional office-bearers because it is difficult from some people to get time off from work. Also the policy of calling RECs is difficult to implement because of budget constraints. Lack of resources also makes it difficult to visit all locals every month.

We attended a youth congress in October 12-14 last year in Benoni. We did not win the positions we contested. We debated issues and made a meaningful contribution to the congress, including helping to elect leaders.

The election results were as follows: chairperson – MPD Hlong­wane from the JC Bez region; deputy chair – Vusimuzi Thyalwa from the Western Cape region; secretary – Lazola Ndlazilwana from the Eastern Cape region; deputy secretary – Elliott Gordon from KwaZulu-Natal; and treasurer – Pinky Ramokoka from Hlanganani. Vusi Thyalwa is our deployee.

There are serious challenges across all locals, and we note that the Fuzile Kheswa local did not attend the forum’s last REC or the march we held on October 27 last year; that only six members from Dan Kubheka attended the march; and that only four members of Fannie Molefe attended.

Four members of Makhudu Pheko and 15 members of Manyathi local attended the march. In the forthcoming REC of the youth forum we will expect locals to give detailed reports on their status.