The South African Municipal Workers Union (SAMWU) has followed the president’s precautionary measures by postponing its National Congress, which was scheduled for March 2020.
In a statement on Tuesday, 17 March 2020, the South African Municipal Workers Union heeded President Cyril Ramaphosa’s call to limit social gatherings by postponing its twelfth National Congress, which was scheduled for 23 to 26 March 2020 in Mafikeng, North West. The congress would have contravened President Ramaphosa’s instruction that prohibited gatherings of over 100 people, as it expected over 600 attendants.
“In light of the announcement by the president, a painful but justifiable conclusion has been arrived at that the twelfth National Congress be postponed until such a time that the State of National Disaster is lifted or government announces otherwise,” the statement read. Beyond this, the union has decided to postpone its Special Central Executive Committee and Financial Committee meetings, which were to sit before the National Congress.
The union urged its members to abide by the government’s precautionary measures, to minimize the spread of the virus. Should there arise a need for general meetings, the union advised members to hold the meetings in stages that comply with the instruction of under 100 people. SAMWU called on the South African Local Government Association (SALGA) to announce a health plan that will ensure the safety of SAMWU’s frontline workers, including bus drivers, community health workers and cashiers.