06 Dec

UASA Media Release: 6 December 2021

Statement by Abigail Moyo, spokesperson of the trade union UASA:

UASA, as an affiliate organisation of the Federation of Unions of South Africa (FEDUSA), is proud of the array of new strategic resolutions that FEDUSA has adopted and that will develop the federation over the coming years. FEDUSA adopted the resolutions at a special congress in Benoni earlier today.

The new resolutions reflect the federation’s formal commitment to address climate change in South Africa, the region, and the globe.

Addressing delegates earlier, Jacques Hugo, UASA CEO and FEDUSA Vice President for Development, emphasised that workers’ demand for justice during the transition to a low carbon economy cannot remain mere rhetoric but should become a basic necessity to be supported by executable strategies such as the federation’s climate change policy.

“Moreover, we need urgent action as the ecological crisis continues to deepen, presenting fears and uncertainties for current and future generations. Climate change has an adverse impact on the biophysical environment, marine life, rainfall, and weather patterns, including unpredictable tectonic plate movements that exert pressure on water aquifers and result in floods. Psychologically, this has resulted in a ‘shifting baseline’ effect particularly among young and future generations,” said Hugo.

The federation also took note of the government’s recent announcement to investigate the feasibility of making COVID-19 vaccinations mandatory and barring unvaccinated individuals from accessing specific facilities and areas.

“FEDUSA fully endorses those plans, however, the federation believes that the social partners of organised labour, business, and government at NEDLAC should be given the opportunity to investigate the complexities of introducing mandatory vaccinations for workers and the general public,” said the federation in a statement.

“The outcomes of such investigations and consultations should strike a good balance between public health concerns, constitutional provisions, cultural and religious beliefs, and the imperatives of economic recovery and reconstruction. An important area of focus for organised labour would be whether both the Occupational Health and Safety Act and the Compensation for Occupational Injuries and Diseases Act should be amended to include COVID-19 as an occupational disease that triggers fair compensation for affected workers.”

UASA also congratulates the newly elected leadership for FEDUSA who were elected this morning. The following members were elected as the new National Office Bearers for the next five years:

• President: Mr Masele Godfrey Selematsela (returned unopposed)
• Deputy President: Ms Martle Keyter (returned unopposed)
• Vice President Development: Mr Jacques Hugo (returned unopposed)
• Vice President Finance: Mr Chris Klopper (returned unopposed)
• Vice President Training and Education Committee: Mr. Basil Manuel
• Vice President Gender and Social Justice: Ms Nobandla Silinyane
• Vice President Public Sector Committee: Mr Pierre Snyman

UASA wishes the new national office bearers all the best in their respective positions. We look forward to a productive term with ample development across all our sectors and the labour force.
For further enquiries or to set up a personal interview, contact Abigail Moyo at 065 170 0162 .

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