Monday, 12 October 2009

Labor Brokers and Unions

As early as May we knew that the honeymoon was over when Zwelinzima Vavi told a press conference that Zuma better hold on to Polokwane gains and election promises (that included abolition of labour brokers) if he still wanted their (Alliance) support. Labor brokering is on every ones lips right now for all the wrong reasons. I have known about labour brokers since 2003, I think the first real job that my wife got was through a labour broker which I never understood how they work. She did not pay anyone to get that job and she was not expected to pay any thing, in fact her relationship with that agent ended when she got the job.

Labor broker are causing a lot of harm to the unemployed as they hire and fire as they wish and they have become employers themselves. The ANC U-turn on the banning of labour broker infuriated a lot of COSATU heavy weights. At the same time the ANC is carefully using Blade Nzimande and Gwede Mantashe as a buffer zone to test and keep in check the hostilities in the Alliance and they are doing a sterling job at pulling wool over workers. They were the loudest in the latest COSATU 10th national Congress held at Gallagher estates. They seem to be oblivious to the fact that for COSATU this is about survival hence they want to hang on to the soldiers as their members.

Over the past 15 years COSATU has lost a lot of members in the private sector. This has weakened COSATU heavily in the private sector and the main culprits are labour broker and casualisation as big business try to hang on to their hefty profits whilst spending less and less on labour. The only sector that has kept COSATU going is the public sector. They can’t afford to lose South African Security Forces Union SASFU instead they want to robe in South African National Defence Union SANDU and the doctors in their books. It does not look like is about workers right to me ,but is about survival.

Most interestingly during COSATU congress in Gallagher estates, NUM members who work for Murray and Robert in one of the mines in Rustenburg wanted to gate crash the Congress to give Vavi they grievances because the NUM had failed them. They told me they were kicked out of their hostel by hired prison inmates and now they live in tents provided by the municipality in that city. As they were plotting to storm the gathering NUM national leaders were busy pleading with them not to do so.

This came in the heals of another attack on NUM officials in the same city, but from a different mine. As we speak one of those leaders who were attacked by their own members is still in hospital. Num is one of the biggest unions in COSATU and these events tell us that unions are becoming easy on employers to keeps number of member high. How do you explain a scenario where workers turn against their leaders?

Friday, 2 October 2009

Is he in or out?

Can South Africa afford to lose a coach now? Most Soccer lovers think there is no turning back. When Santana come from his latest trip from Europe it will be his last ...that is if the likes of Mninawa Ntloko are to be believed. Every one seems to be vying for his this poor man’s blood. Not for the first time in our 17 year history. The list of coaches can make a team complete with its reserves. What have south Africa achieved after firing coaches closer to big tournaments? Nothing but another learning curve thinks is high time that South Africa stick to the man of their choice and at least not renew his contract when it expires. I am beginning to wonder if we do have players to compete at the highest level. If we can’t beat the likes of Madagascar convincingly.

Carlos Alberto Pereira was beginning to be comfortable after a long haul of be called a “world cup failure with the best in the what is he going to do with South Africa” indeed he nearly left too soon I guess he could smell the coffee and jumped before he was pushed. A friend of mine who is a Nigerian always tell me that the all conquering Super Eagles of 1994 were not the best team of to come out of Nigeria. He claims that most players were average players whom Westerhof thought them to be disciplined. He says a good team come out of a team that doesn’t keep on changing and I think Santana knows that too. Such players a craving for bigger tournaments and we have seen the glimpse of that during Confed cup. Sanity prevailed and the team was given a chance to perform at a big tournament with their coach and that was history. Can we continue then stick to Santana whom I must confess I never liked as soon as I was told he didn’t have national team experience. He is here now lets support him.

Who is racist in Mzansi?

Are we obsessed with race or South Africa is the worst country when it comes to race relations. I cant remember hoe many times did I read about race. Sowetan interview Akhona Ndungane (originally from Gxulu in Libode) and they asked him about racism in the Blue Bulls camp. Of course they were hoping for an exclusive on race relation in the Afrikaner City of Pretoria. Later I read that COSATU is complaining about some Northwest farmers who continue to persecute poor farm workers like they are stray animal on their land.

I watched Cricket when South Africa was being humiliated by England nogal, and the following day I read a column, which was slamming JP Duminy for playing poorly in Star newspaper. In my view it was not an unfair comment, even though I believed that South Africa was let down by it’s bowlers who conceded more 600 runs in two matches. But wait until I read a letter from a Cricket follower who saw it from the racism point of view. He says that after the match they were batting on who will be found guilty by a white columnist the following morning. They assumed that a white columnist would pick on a Black player. Of course Rodney Harman didn’t disappoint.

Are we living in a screwed up country or are we paranoid? How often did you hear about reverse racism from white people when it comes to job-hunting yet more blacks feel as if things have never change.