'Malema is finished'
"The ANC towers over the individual."
THE Marikana tragedy that left 44 people dead, including mineworkers and police, will not affect President Jacob Zuma's re-election at the ANC's elective conference in Mangaung. This is according to Enoch Godongwana, ANC national executive committee member and former leader of National Union of Metalworkers of SA.
He said Marikana would not directly affect the ANC as the unrest was specific to the platinum sector and "not something broad based".
He made the remarks to Merrill Lynch, a wealth management division of the Bank of America.
In a briefing note to investors, Merrill Lynch quoted Godongwana as having said that the deadly dispute was unlikely to spread to other parts of the country as the circumstances that led to the strike in the Lonmin mine were unique.
Godongwana said Marikana was a wake-up call for Cosatu which, through its affiliate the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM), had possibly "dropped the ball".
He said: "There was also a leadership vacuum. No union demands from either NUM or Amcu (Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union) were made to management."
Godongwana, who is also head of the ANC economic transformation committee, said expelled ANC Youth League leader Julius Malema's political opportunism at the mine - where he addressed striking workers after police shot and killed 34 miners - would not help his political career.
"Outside the ANC he is finished. The ANC towers over the individual. The ANC has had its fair share of mavericks in over its history and Malema is no different."
Malema was asked to preside over a memorial service in Marikana last week where he attacked Zuma and his cabinet ministers, saying the government was treating them like pigs.
When Zuma addressed workers the day before, they also told him Malema was the first politician to come and address them.
Godongwana suggested that divisions within NUM had led to the strengthening of Amcu.
Wage demands came from self-appointed leaders of the illegal striking workers.
"NUM is weakened in the public eye and has to regain its strength and fix its internal divisions.
"However, NUM is not a populist union and won't try to regain its strength via populist or militant policy," Godongwana said.
He said unions needed to look at the lack of collective and centralised bargaining in the platinum sector.
Centralised bargaining, he said, was a more effective tool than the current state of fragmented bargaining.