The leader of the National Union of Metal Workers of South Africa Mr. Irvin Jim says President Jacob Zuma and Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa are two sides of the same coin.
According to Irvin Jim, Cosatu’s endorsement of Ramaphosa as Zuma’s successor is the worst mistake the federation has made.
He argued that the ANC and South Africa under Ramaphosa won’t be different from Zuma’s leadership.
Validating his points, Jim said just like Zuma, Ramaphosa is the enemy of working class people. He recalled that Ramaphosa, on many occasions, had attacked working class interests to benefit the capitalist class of which he is a member.
He alleged that the business mogul sold the working to the white monopoly capital which left the economy owned and controlled by the very same capitalist class.
Mr. Irvin Jim said: “An ANC government led by Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa will be no better than the one led by Jacob Zuma. It will do nothing to stop corruption and the looting of the country’s wealth, which is not confined to a few crony capitalists and their political friends, but which is entrenched in the whole corrupt capitalist system.”
In the early hours of Thursdays, Cosatu shocked President Jacob Zuma and his loyalists, who have been working to have his ex-spouse Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma succeed him as ANC leader when it announced Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa as its preferred candidate.
Eight reasons why the federation promised to lobby and support Ramaphosa include:
- The federation believes that Ramaphosa will be committed to the movement’s National Democratic Revolution (NDR), a programme adopted during the ANC’s 53rd national conference held in Mangaung, Free State, in 2012.
- They believe the deputy president will be committed to the tripartite alliance, a strategic political partnership between the ANC, Cosatu and the South African Communist Party (SACP) formed during the Apartheid era to overthrow white minority rule in the country.
- Commitment to the fight against corruption – concerns around factionalism, gatekeeping and money politics have proven to be divisive in the alliance
- Commitment to the unity of the ANC and the democratic movement
- Commitment to workers and the poor in the country (although it’s interesting to note that they think a capitalist can do this.
- Commitment to defending and preserving the anti-imperialist and internationalist character of the ANC.
- They believe that Ramaphosa has a background in working-class movements. He was one of the founders of the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM).
- And finally, they believe he and his team will be guided by the resolutions of the ANC
Appalled by the federation’s choice, Jim suggested that Cosatu should form a worker’s party rather than wasting its support on the ANC and its likes.
Mr. Irvin Jim said the ANC and DA neo-liberal policies have done more harm than good for the working class and the people in general. These policies, he added are the primary causes of mass poverty, mass unemployment and huge inequalities in the country.