update on vw strike 15.3.2000


dear cdes,


on sat past, the vwsa workrs met the local civic organisations who now agreed to support the struggle and who are prepared to join a march and mobilise in uitenhage and pe. yesterday we received news that the vwsa dismissed workers' wives have formed a concerned group and are today meeting the crisis committee to hear a report and plan a programme of action in support of their husbands. the march has been set for the 20.3.2000 and we are asking nstunstu and nyanda to give a report from brasil at the march. teachers and school pupils are being mobilised as well. the pac has decided to call for a stayaway for monday and are prepared to act to make it effective. the mdm [mass democratic movement of uitenhage- comprising sanco, anc sacp and cosatu] meeting last night refused to discuss the vw issue and only looked at the issue of winnie mandela coming on march 21 to uitenhage [sharpville day] workers plan to picket the roads and meetings that winnie addresses. only sanco supported the workers. someone will try to get an audience with winnie to put over the view of the dismissed workers.

for the first time in the whole battle, the company lawyers talked to the vwsa workers' appointed lawyers, yesterday. this is very significant as the company has been looking for a way out of the corner that they have painted for themselves. at the same time many workers inside are being dismissed - it seems almost to replace a retrenchment exercise. this is a very serious situation as it coud undemine the support the workers have inside. there has been further mass resignations from numsa and workers are seriously exposed. there has been a call for committees inside to be formed but the time appears to have come to consider joining another union, as numsa is intransigent about the problems they have caused.

we await the response from the company for the workers proposal for a meeting on friday. it seems that this meeting may take place. a general meeting has been called for friday.


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