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PSI affiliate representatives visit Swaziland trade unionists

07 June 2012
The union delegation in discussion with Nick Sigler, UNISON, UK
A delegation made up of Nick Sigler, head of international relations in UNISON, UK, Polly Jones, UNISON international officer, and George de Roos, international officer for AbvaKabo FNV, the Netherlands, visited Swaziland on 18-23 May to meet trade union representatives and to organise a joint education project with the nurses' union SWADNU and the public service union NAPSAWU. They also met with representatives of the Trade Union Congress of Swaziland and the Swaziland Democracy campaign.

The visit by UNISON and AbvaKabo FNV unionists provoked a surprising reaction by the Swaziland government, who informed them that they should have declared their presence to the government when they arrived in the country. Together with PSI, they will remain very vigilant concerning the situation of trade unions in Swaziland.

The Trade Union Congress of Swaziland (TUCOSWA) had been deregistered by the government in April 2012 in a deliberate act to undermine the trade union movement. Since then, the international community has been urging the Swaziland government to re-register the TUCOSWA and to allow Freedom of Association for the unions, in conformity with ILO standards.

The PSI Executive Board, at its meeting in Geneva on 30 May - 1 June, adopted a resolution on Swaziland, condemning the decision of the Mswati regime in Swaziland for refusing to recognise the Trade Union Congress of Swaziland (TUCOSWA), the legitimate representative of Swazi working people.

The resolution also condemns the Swaziland government for the creation of a yellow union that it has created to take the place of TUCOSWA.

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