BLLAHWU calls for fair share of wealth among Batswana
The Botswana Land Boards, Local Authorities and Health Workers Union (BLLAHWU) exists fundamentally to safeguard, advance, and deepen workers’ rights and bargain for the improvement of workers conditions of service and welfare.
Union president, Thatayaone Kesebonye said this when officiating at the BLLAHWU 11th Annual General Meeting (AGM) on 2nd December in Francistown. He said that labour influence is of greatest importance to determining the political landscape of any country. “Therefore, as a class conscious and politically advanced trade union, fighting for the growth of communism as ascribed by Karl Marx is a goal we exist to attain to ensure that there is a fair share of the wealth created by Batswana through the elimination of socioeconomic class struggles,” Kesebonye said.
The world, he observed, is currently experiencing substantial crises such as wars, infringement of the principles of human rights, climate change, economic turmoil and energy supply. “As a revolutionary and militant trade union which is not only labour centred but goes beyond the bread and butter issues, we also affirm that employees are people, not just workers, and work is a subset of life.
“Hence BLLAHWU is fully aware of its responsibility amidst the above mentioned current crises that the world is facing,” the union leader posited, adding that the plight of workers who are members of society demand strong international solidarity.
“The majority of the crisis that the world is facing currently is powered by the capitalist in the scramble to secure and protect their economic and industrial appetite. Moreover, the trending austerity measures by different governments that has led to poor working conditions, unbearable living standards and high unemployment rates is yet another measure to keep the capitalist in power and avoid its collapse,” Kesebonye noted.
He said BLLAHWU members are deeply aggrieved by the cruel acts of disregard for both the international and humanitarian law by Israel towards the people of Palestine.
“The Israel-Palestine war has stripped the Palestinian people of all the rights and freedoms that exist under the sun. Despite the harsh conditions in Gaza Strip which include limited access to survival needs such as health, electricity and water, Israel is untouchable as it continues to subject the helpless Palestinian people into abject poverty and making them refugees by crippling their sluggish economy,” the BLLAHWU president condemned. He found the US political influence in support of Israel concerning, observing that it will ultimately dent the illusion that the US is a model of democracy, complained BLLAHWU which is also concerned about what he calls the imperialist agenda in Africa. In Kesebonye’s view, the state of industrial relations in Botswana leaves a lot to be desired. The reluctance by government to resuscitate the bargaining council, to review and amend laws and policies, to engage with trade unions to resolve matters affecting employees is a clear indication of a nation that disregards its employees and citizens and sees them as labour commodities. “It is important for the workers’ class to protect and defend their class through any reasonable means not excluding them exerting their power to determine who shall lead them for the next five (5) years,” the union leader said. BLLHWU secretary general, Ketlhalefile Motshegwa regretted the prevalence and amplification of pettiness, trivia at the expense of strategic issues. “There is so much fighting in the structure leading to their weakening. No attention is given to the ideological party of the movement,” Motshegwa lamented.