Thursday, 20th January 2022

THE Affirmative Repositioning (AR) movement plans to establish a labour union to liberate Namibian workers in the public sector from reactionary and co-opted unions.

This was revealed by AR leader Job Amupanda as part of the movement's agenda for 2021 released last week.
Amupanda said the union, to be known as the Revolutionary Union, would strive to liberate Namibian workers from reactionary and ineffective unions of which the leaders have colluded with employers to exploit workers.
The union would seek to gain collective bargaining at state-owned enterprises and the entire public sector.
He said the movement has already started registering the union.
Amupanda said his movement has over the years received numerous calls from workers countrywide to effectively respond to labour-related issues.
He said these workers came to the AR's doorstep despite being represented by registered trade unions.
Amupanda said the current unions representing workers in the public sector – the Namibia Public Workers Union (Napwu) and the Namibia Teachers Union Nantu) – have been co-opted and at times neglect issues affecting their members.
“This is worse for the public sector where a cabal of unions affiliated to South West Africa ... have repeatedly sold the workers for political gain. Workers in the public sector need to be liberated from this tyranny and collusion,” Amupanda said.
He said the union would be autonomous, yet maintain a symbiotic relationship with the AR movement.
Its constitution, programmes, activities, and campaigns would aim to bring about “real emancipation” for the country's workers, he said.
The AR's union would also raise labour awareness and organise workers to fight oppression by “facing black and white oppressors and the capitalist oppression of the working people of Namibia”.
Apart from establishing a trade union, Amupanda revealed the AR would start with the establishment of AR communities, which are equivalent to political party branches.
“The AR community will be the only structure to be established during this phase. It is for this reason that we declare 2021 as the year of an AR community. It is a year in which in every location, every informal settlement, and every suburb an AR community will be established,” he said.

-The Namibian

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