In the early hours of Saturday morning, 8 November, the Central Executive Committee of South Africa's largest labour federation, COSATU, voted by a margin of 33 to 24 to expel its biggest affiliate, NUMSA from the federation. This decision will have far-reaching consequences not only for COSATU, but for the liberation movement and the direction of the class struggle.
The situation in Burkina Faso has been moving at lightning speed since the revolution erupted on Thursday, 30 October. Not only did the revolutionary masses overthrew the hated Blaise Compaoré, but also his hand-picked successor, general Honoré Traoré, just a few hours later. Since then the regime has been reeling. Meanwhile, the military tops, some reactionary elements within the opposition and the major imperialist powers have been scrambling to hatch some kind of a deal to pacify the masses and restore some sort of bourgeois normality.
The West African country of Burkina Faso exploded into a full blown revolutionary situation on Thursday, October 30, with tens of thousands of people storming the parliament and other government buildings, setting them ablaze, ransacking government offices and sending politicians, including long serving president Blaise Compaoré fleeing.
The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (NUMSA) announced on Monday that it is severing ties with the tripartite alliance of the ANC, the South African Communist Party (SACP) and COSATU, the trade union federation. It also announced that it is setting up its socialist "United Front" on 13-16 December this year.
As a result of the increased domestic production of shale oil, the US has slashed crude oil imports from a peak of almost 14 million barrels per day in 2006, to slightly above 7 million barrels per day. Crude oil imports from Nigeria, one of the principal sources of light crude, were also slashed from more than one million barrels per day in 2010 to zero in July 2014. This figure is unprecedented since Nigeria started exporting oil about 40years ago.
The 5th parliamentary term has been unlike any of the others in the last 20 years of bourgeois democratic rule. In the four months since the elections in May, parliament has suddenly become a real focal point of attention.
On Tuesday, 1 July, hundreds of thousands of metalworkers went out on strike in the engineering and metals sectors, bringing the industry to a complete standstill. The strike involves small, medium and large companies, with more than 220,000 workers at about 10,500 workplaces. Some of the big companies that are affected includes Bell Equipment, Dorbyl, Murray and Roberts, Scaw Metals and Reunert.
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