Programme Director
Members of the NEC Cde Neo Masegela and Cde Sipho Mayongo,
Members of the Provincial Working Committee,
Members of the Provincial Executive Committee,
Representatives from the Department of Education,
Representatives from Government,
Regional Executive Committee members,
Site Stewart Council members,
Members of SADTU,
Sponsors and Invited guests,
Comrades and friends,

We convey Revolutionary greetings to you all.

We are, indeed, humbled to be part of this August occasion of your Provincial Music Competitions.
We must say, chairperson, that this event takes place during an important time in the political calendar of this country.

It is the year of the Centenary celebrations of the African National Congress and this forms part thereof

It is the Mandela Month after we celebrated Cde Nelson Mandela`s 94th birthday a few days ago. As the celebrations continue throughout the month, Sadtu Northern Cape saw it fit to hold their music competitions, as part of singing for our icon. The Sadtu National event will also take place tomorrow, where our leaders and staff will be painting a school in Tembisa, Gauteng and giving out food parcels to the needy. Sadtu will also engage learners, parents, teachers and the community on Quality Teaching and Learning while providing wellness services to all.

The SACP held a successful Congress in KwaZulu Natal two weeks ago.

Cosatu is holding its Provincial Congresses in preparation for the National Congress in September

Our current Home Affairs Minister, Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma was elected the Head of the 54 State African Union a few days ago. This proved to be the fruits of our Gender struggle and women emancipation at its best. We wish her well as she assumes the role of unifying Africa along the lines of Afro and Franco-phone.

Our converging here today, signifies unity and cohesion in the Province and we believe that this will prevail even after the competitions leading us to the National Festival.We must take pride in that this is our time, not to teach music and watch our learners sing, but to do it ourselves. This chair, is what we term `teachers at play`

It is also important to watch our back while we play. This is the time at which the enemy will find an opportunity to divide this Union of Curtis Nkondo et al by posing uncalled for questions when something goes wrong,

They will ask; "where was Sadtu when this happened?" the appropriate answer that we should give is; "we were here, singing in relaxation after weekdays of teaching." we must not be ashamed to brag about that, as Sadtu, we are subscribers to Quality Teaching and learning. It is our campaign and we adhere to it.
When people have led up to their sell-by date, they should bow out in dignity and not seek to recruit us into their factions, we are and will remain a disciplined force.

Comrades, Sadtu has long taken a stand leading to Mangaung and we will not barge on our resolve. We have a President and Secretary General and whether it`s termed "the second term" or "second transition" we maintain our stance.

We have a task to guard our Union jealously and the fact that we are an affiliate, does not take away our autonomy. No one will take over Sadtu from us and we will continue to lead. We hear others on public platforms claiming not to be part of factions, yet they are leading them and want to take us with them. We must say "NO"

As we sing today, let us do so proudly for the benefit of our Union and it`s membership holding our flag up high.

This competition is not meant to prove which Region sings better than the other, but to prove that Sadtu in this Province can sing. The choirs that are going to be selected today for the National Festival, we should all proudly embrace and support them.

This event partly responds to Pillar One of our 2030 Vision (Servicing union members) where our members are the ones participating and it gives us a sense of belonging to the Union.

Lastly chair, on salary negotiations:

On the 5th July the employer presented the following to Labour for consultation;

6,9% salary increase effective April 2012
R900 housing allowance with the provision of Government Employees Housing Scheme to be finalised later this year and the Multi term agreement.

They later came and refuted the 6,9 to 6,7 The rest remaining the same.

labour declared a dispute and allowed mediation.

On 27 July the Mediator presented the following; # 7% salary increase for 2012/2013 effective 1st of May #CPI + 1% for 2013/2014 and 2014/2015 respectively effective April #housing allowance of R900 with a rider that says in the next round of negotiations the issue of GEHS be opened

We have a dissatisfaction on the fluctuation of inflation which may either come to our disfavour or benefit

As we conclude,

We wish you well as you continue and may the best choir win. See you in Durban.