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Afrique du sud : solidarity with the workers’ occupation of the Mine Line factory

D 4 décembre 2010     H 04:49     A     C 0 messages

Dear comrades,

We are writing to you to re-emphasize the urgency with which we have appealed for your solidarity with the workers’ occupation of the Mine Line factory on the West Rand. As you are aware, the workers of Mine Line on October 20, having been thrown out of their jobs through the previous owner’s blatant defrauding of the company decided to guard their workplace against the asset-stripping in which the owner was illegally engaging after closing down. The occupation has now been going on for over a month, under workers’ control and with the support of their union MEWUSA as well as a broad solidarity committee comprising a number of organisations. NUMSA and Cosatu in the Western Cape have also been among those who have extended welcome solidarity to the workers, and we still hope that this brilliant example will followed by Cosatu with its full might.
The Mine Line occupation has in fact set the tone for the rebuilding of living working class solidarity in South Africa. This is the first factory occupation in SA since the outbreak of the 2009 recession and of immense significance in opening a new path of workers’ fight-back against the offensive of the bosses. Now the struggle at Mine Line is at a knife’s edge and we desperately need your support to forward the struggles of all workers in SA and beyond.
The liquidator of the company has applied for an urgent interdict to have the workers evicted from the factory and is intending to sell off the company assets in an auction on Tuesday November 30, which is certainly not going to result in any mentionable gains for the workers. At the same time, the workers have formed a cooperative and may be nearing a breakthrough in securing funding to take over the factory and restart production. We urgently need to secure legal representation to oppose the interdict, which will be heard tomorrow Friday November 26, 10h00. We may also need you participation in mass mobilisations to protest against the eviction and selling off the assets that should rightly belong to the workers.
If there was ever a time to demonstrate your commitment to non-sectarian working class solidarity, it is now.

Yours in struggle,

Mametlwe Sebei
Media and Campaigns Coordinator,
Metal and Electrical Workers Union of South Africa