Statement on Support of SAMWU-IMATU marches
Tuesday 7 September 2004
PRESS RELEASE (TUESDAY 7TH SEPTEMBER 2004)
APF TO JOIN MARCHES ON COUNCIL OFFICES BY SAMWU & IMATU ACROSS GAUTENG PROVINCE ON THURSDAY 9TH SEPTEMBER
ORGANISED WORKERS AND POOR COMMUNITIES MUST UNITE AGAINST PRIVATISATION, CASUALISATION AND DETERIORATING SERVICE DELIVERY (INCLUDING PRE-PAID WATER METERS)!
On Thursday (9th September) the Anti-Privatisation Forum (APF) will be mobilising its community affiliates across the Gauteng Province to join the marches being organised by the South African Municipal Workers Union (SAMWU) and the Independent Municipal and Allied Trade Union (IMATU) against privatisation, casualisation and deteriorating service delivery (including pre-paid water meters) being carried out by various local councils/municipalities. The three marches are to take place in the Vaal (Van der Byl Park), East Rand (Germiston) and Tshwane (Central Pretoria).
The APF was initially formed to unite workers and communities fighting against privatisation. Over the last several years, the APF has consistently supported worker struggles and demands that have arisen as a direct result of the consequences of privatisation and we continue to mobilise and organise in poor communities in order to unite and strengthen the broad working class in the face of state policies that attack the working/living conditions and human dignity of both organised workers and the unemployed poor.
The disastrous results of the neoliberal policies that the state continues to implement are there for all to see: massive loss of jobs in the public sector; outsourcing and casualisation of labour; public sector cost-cutting exercises; corporatisation of service deliverers; housing evictions and forced removals; water and electricity cut-offs; and the implementation of the pre-paid meter system in poor communities. While the workers and poor suffer, council officials and top management give themselves record salary increases; arrogantly dismiss worker/community concerns and demands; vigorously crack-down on worker/community protest; and, continue to treat the private sector and its bosses as their key allies.
The marches that are taking place are the latest indication that organised municipal workers, who are at the forefront of effecting service delivery to the poor, are becoming increasingly fed-up with these policies/actions. For too long now, there has been a false divide between workers and poor communities who are fighting the same enemy. The APF has long understood that the unity of organised workers and poor communities is essential to turning the tide against privatisation and the greed & arrogance that it’s associated policies breed amongst officialdom/management in both the public and private sectors. That is why we will be marching alongside SAMWU and IMATU on Thursday.
WORKERS AND POOR COMMUNITIES - MOBILISE, UNITE AND FIGHT