13 June 2024


The South African Municipal Workers’ Union (SAMWU) in KwaZulu Natal notes and welcomes the decision by the African National Congress (ANC) to remove Cllr Mxolisi Kaunda as the Mayor of eThekwini Metropolitan Municipality. The ANC has decided to redeploy Cllr Kaunda to the National Council of Provinces (NCOP).

SAMWU believes that the decision to redeploy Kaunda is well timed and will bring the much needed stability for the City. As a Union, we have long argued that this current administration has mismanaged the labour unrest within the City earlier this year. It was this administration’s arrogance that resulted in protracted engagements to resolve grievances raised by City workers. To this day, the municipality and the Union have not been able to address these grievances, particularly the correct grading of the municipality. To this day, the City has failed to protect municipal workers who are brutally killed while on duty and in the properties of the municipality.

We want to believe that this decision has been made with the interests of workers and residents of eThekwini at heart, and not influenced by political factions within the party. We trust that the ANC has made a conscious decision to accelerate service delivery to City residents, particularly the poor, who have been denied basic services under this administration. We further hope that the ANC aims to bring about labour stability within the City, which has been lacking for a very long time.

As the City prepares to elect a new mayor, we call upon the ANC to ensure that their candidate is someone well-versed in labour issues. The City desperately needs a leader who understands the complexities and dynamics of labour relations. Someone with a strong labour background will be better equipped to address and resolve the longstanding grievances of City workers, ensuring fair treatment, protection of employees, and the restoration of morale among municipal employees. This, in turn, will enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of service delivery to residents.

Having a mayor with a solid understanding of labour issues is crucial for balancing the needs of workers and residents. Such a leader will not only address worker grievances but also ensure that service delivery is not compromised. This balance is essential for creating a harmonious and productive municipal environment where workers feel valued and residents receive the services they deserve.

If the ANC truly prioritises the needs of workers and residents, this will be reflected in the calibre of their candidate. We also urge all political parties represented in Council to support a candidate who genuinely has the interests of workers and residents at heart. Workers and residents have suffered greatly during this administration; now is the time to correct the mistakes of the past and move towards a more stable and efficient municipal administration.

As SAMWU, we look forward to working with the new mayor and the executive in restoring trust relations between workers and management. We further look forward to working with the new administration in finalising the benchmarking exercise, in the interest of our members and all employees of eThekwini Metropolitan Municipality.

Issued by SAMWU KwaZulu Natal
Nokubonga Dinga
Provincial Secretary
065 871 8434


Xolani Dube
Regional Secretary
074 953 7412