Cosatu to boycott Zim, Swaziland goods
Date of publication: August 12, 2008
Source: Independent Online (South Africa)
A week-long boycott of goods destined for Zimbabwe and Swaziland will be launched next month throughout the Southern African region, Cosatu general-secretary Zwelinzima Vavi said on Tuesday.
"We commit ourselves to the creation of an effective momentum for sustained boycotts of goods destined for the two countries, throughout the region, with the trade union movement taking an active lead," said Vavi addressing the media in Braamfontein, Johannesburg.
He said Cosatu was planning a one-week long boycott in September during which all workers would refuse to touch goods destined for these countries, in a bid to put pressure on their leaders.
"All workers must refuse to serve President Robert Mugabe and King Mswati the Third, as well as their close associates and collaborators, anywhere in the region, so as to ensure that they indeed feel the heat of isolation."
Vavi said specific dates for the boycott would be announced at a later stage, but Cosatu was hoping to hold it near Swaziland's 40/40 independence celebration, planned for September, which marks the 40th anniversary of Swaziland's independence from Great Britain.
He would check the government's response after a week. If nothing transpired, Cosatu might extend the boycott to a second week.
This was one of the resolutions taken at the Zimbabwe and Swaziland "Solidarity Conference" which ended in Johannesburg on Monday.
The conference also called for a halt to Zimbabwe's political violence which followed the March 29 elections.
"All the structures which have been perpetrating and directing attacks must be immediately dismantled and international monitors should be invited to Zimbabwe to assist."
Another call was for a lift of the ban on aid groups and civil society organisations, so that they could attend to victims of the humanitarian disaster.
The conference declared there was a need for multi-party democratic elections in Swaziland.
"The continued denial of political space, particularly the ban on multiparty politics and the right to participate in public institutions of decision making, remains a denial of a core tenet of democracy."