SADTU Free State 6th Triennial Provincial Conference
27-29 June 2014, President Hotel, Bloemfontein
We, the delegates from different branches in the Province, gathered here today representing the 14 000 members in the Province, as dictated by the union Constitution, to inter alia, review and formulate policies and propose amendments to the Constitution. Our 6th Triennial Provincial Conference was convened under the theme of the SADTU National Congress of 2010: “Organise and Empower Education Workers to Deliver Quality Public Education and Build Socialism.”
Conference is overwhelmed by the unity and high level of discipline that prevailed during the conference, especially in the light of the recent development that took place in the province. This is the spirit to be taken to our different structures of our union.
Conference deplored the involvement of courts in the internal matters of our organisations by those who are defeated and hell-bent on causing divisions from within.
Conference noted that the citizens of South Africa have once more bestowed their trust in our ally the African National Congress, which consequently scored a decisive victory in the recent National General Elections. SADTU made a profound and significant contribution towards the elections campaign jointly with other sister Unions within the federation. Together we can now move South Africa forward!
This year is the first since the loss of South Africa’s greatest son, Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, who was a lifetime member of SADTU, and who addressed the founding congress of our union on 6th October 1990. Conference confirmed its pride in SADTU’s place in the liberation movement, and repudiated the way that some, both within and outside of our movement, would attempt to change the character of SADTU into being a union without roots.
SADTU congratulates the former and long-serving Provincial Secretary of COSATU, comrade Sam Mashinini for being deployed to the Free State Provincial Legislature, where he has been given the mandate to lead in the department of Public Works and Infrastructure. We further congratulate our national Vice President for Sports, Arts and Culture, comrade Fezeka Loliwe for her deployment to serve in the national parliament.
SADTU in the Province is already preparing to assist the ANC in the next local authority elections in 2016. SADTU members will take part in the list process as individual members of the ANC. SADTU members will once again campaign for the ANC, and will continue forming the backbone of the IEC’s volunteer force on the Election Day.
As a trade union, and as a disciplined affiliate of the COSATU federation, SADTU supports its allies in the National Democratic Revolutionary Alliance, including the South African Communist Party. Conference noted that:
Trade Unions do not, and cannot perform the functions of political parties
The worker’s party exists. It is the South African Communist Party.
Conference noted that SADTU’s revolutionary role is not because it is a trade union, but it is because of the role played by education in a revolutionary society.
SADTU’s 2030 Vision is our contribution to the NDR. We are patriotic teachers. We are a union of professionals, agents of change, and champions of People’s Education for People’s Power. We know that education is not, and never was, ideologically neutral. We uphold the importance of teaching our history, our indigenous languages, culture, values and heritage. We create a nation that learns, so as to advance its civilisation.
There can be no revolution without revolutionary education.
There can be no revolutionary education without revolutionary consequences.
SADTU in the Province is committed to a corruption-free Department of Education, and will co-operate with the Department, the South African Council for Educators and the Education Labour Relations Council in the investigation of allegations of the selling of posts for cash. Teaching is a noble profession and cannot afford to be associated with corruption, worse the exploitation of the teachers who are looking for a job.
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The remainder of this Declaration is divided in accordance with the five Pillars of SADTU’s 2030 Vision, which are the common reporting categories of all SADTU’s provincial and national conferences.
SADTU 2030 VISION PILLAR NUMBER 1
EFFECTIVE SERVICING OF UNION MEMBERS
Conference rejected the tyranny of structurelessness, reaffirmed SADTU’s nature as a democratic trade union adhering to the principle of democratic centralism, and likewise reaffirmed the requirement that while SADTU is open to all in our industry, only those who are ANC are eligible to be leaders in SADTU.
Conference frankly reviewed both the strengths and the weaknesses of its organisation in all parts of the Province, including new recruitment. Membership stands at 14,000. Our target for membership in the Province remains 20,000 and this we resolved to achieve by the next Provincial Conference.
Conference noted the success of its regional Education Workers’ Forums and determined to strengthen this practice, and likewise with the successful adopt-a-school campaign, Letsema campaign and Listening Campaign.
Province has paid close attention to the servicing of membership. Conference is determined to hold SADTU intact in the Province, to defend its Constitution and to repudiate all attempts to split SADTU.
SADTU 2030 VISION PILLAR NUMBER 2
CREATING A LEARNING NATION
SADTU is determined that children in the care of SADTU members and throughout the nation should be taught the history of their country, and most especially, the history of its struggle for freedom.
SADTU is equally determined that the indigenous languages of this country are taught and also used as medium of instruction. This is so that learners benefit from their mother tongue in the early years, and so that the culture of South Africa is fully transmitted to learners through all the years of schooling.
Compulsory schooling without making history and indigenous languages compulsory makes no sense. Schooling is meant to transmit the culture of the nation, including its political culture, to succeeding generations.
SADTU 2030 VISION PILLAR NUMBER 3
PROMOTING A DEVELOPMENT ORIENTED NATION STATE
Conference noted that SADTU’s decisive support for the ANC in the 2014 National Elections was achieved in the face of attempts to decampaign the ANC emanating from inside the ranks of our federation, COSATU, and from NUMSA in particular. These elements have attempted to penetrate SADTU in our Province; this Provincial Conference has demonstrated that they have failed utterly.
The Alliance is healthy within Free State Province. The ANC, COSATU and the SACP are all in good order although there is a need to have this replicated at the lower levels. We look forward to better relations with SASCO and with COSAS. The Conference further noted the critical role of NASGB in education transformation and urged schools to affiliate to this progressive organisation.
SADTU 2030 VISION PILLAR NUMBER 4
CREATING INTERNATIONAL PARTNERSHIP
The Western imperialists continue to dominate the world and are systematically conquering Africa. Conference recognised the significant role that South Africa continues to play in relieving some of the worst consequences of this trend, and providing a lead towards peace and stability.
SADTU in the Province is sensitive to occurrences in its neighbouring and fraternal territory of Lesotho. SADTU believes that the interests of Lesotho will best be served if the current coalition government is preserved and allowed to continue and complete its term of office. Destabilisation of Lesotho will not serve the interests of Basotho, nor of South Africans in the Free State. The current situation in Lesotho, we believe, is nothing else but a class issue and perpetuation of looting of state resources by the rich at the expense of the poor.
SADTU believes that learners from Lesotho should be welcomed to study in South Africa.
The Conference noted that the 200 school girls in Nigerian are still missing and pledged its support to the Nigerian people and in particular the parents of the girls. To this effect we call for safety in our schools and condemn this cowardice action by Boko Haram.
SADTU 2030 VISION PILLAR NUMBER 5
BUILDING A DELIVERY BASED ORGANISATIONAL CAPACITY
Conference commended and supported SADTU’s NEC for being able to deal with corruption at this higher level of the Union. Conference recommended that National Congress should review the sanction so as to impose expulsion of Thobile Ntola from the union, and institute criminal charges against the former President.
Conference urged that harsh steps must be taken against all members who defy policies and Constitution of the union, and by so doing, bring the union into disrepute; and resolved that SADTU must organise political schools through the Curtis Nkondo institute at all sites, branches and regions, as a matter of necessity.
Conference elected the following leadership and complied with SADTU’s Congress resolution on 50/50 gender representation, as follows: