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Now this is how you do it

August 7, 2008

One Day Strike Cripples South AFrica

Thousands of Cosatu members marched to the Union Buildings in Pretoria on Wednesday to hand over a memorandum of grievance against soaring electricity prices to Labour Minister Membathisi Mdladlana.

Upon receiving the memorandum, Mdladlana said he would take it to the relevant people for perusal.

The protesters, forming a sea of red t-shirts, also handed a memorandum to the department of minerals and energy.

Some of the demands included that the costs of power cuts not be borne by the poor and that the cost of electricity for poor communities be kept low.

The marchers said they were satisfied with the response from the minister as they got on to their buses to go home.

Beauty, a protester, said she was glad over the way the protest and handing over the memorandum had been handled.

“I am happy about that. I will know if government takes us seriously only if prices for food and electricity come down,” she said.

Police spokesperson Captain Bonginkosi Msimango said: “No incidents of violence have been reported. About 20 000 people participated in the strike. We also have not received any reports of shops being looted or intimidation.”

Of course, the majority of Americans don’t protest, don’t vote. Yet we are free to bitch and moan about how things never change and seem totally unaware that our failure to exercise our rights is precisely the reason that things don’t change.

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