On Friday, August 13, 2021, the International Day of Solidarity with Miners in Namibia, FSP delivered this statement at protests before the Permanent Mission of the Republic of Namibia in New York City and the Chinese Consulate in San Francisco to denounce the union-busting actions of a Chinese state-owned company.
The Freedom Socialist Party is here today to demand that the Southwest Africa People’s Organization (SWAPO)-led government of President Hage Gottfried Geingob enforce its own labor laws and compel the state-owned Chinese National Nuclear Corporation to stop its union-busting and rehire the fired union leaders of the Mineworkers Union of Namibia (MUN) Rossing Branch.
We condemn the complicity in union-busting of the ruling SWAPO political leadership. SWAPO’s role today in this anti-union attack contrasts sharply with the decades of anti-imperialist struggle that won independence for Namibia from Germany in 1990.
This battle by indigenous African peoples received both moral and material support from the ruling Communist Party in China. But today, these former anti-colonial forces are acting against the interests of the African working people. As the fired miners wrote to address their plight in a letter to Chinese President Xi Jinping, “…we were repeatedly reminded of the role the Peoples’ Republic of China played during the war of our liberation. It appears that the savior has now become the killer.”
We call on President Geingob to force the Chinese National Nuclear Corporation to re-instate the nine fired MUN union organizers and negotiate decent working conditions with these uranium miners. We hold him as president of Namibia accountable for the safety and welfare of the Rossing mine workers’ lawyer Hewat Beukes, whose home has been threatened by attackers and whose water and electricity have been cut off.
As an internationalist socialist feminist organization, the Freedom Socialist Party is committed to winning justice for these Namibian miners, just as for all the exploited and oppressed in the U.S. and around the world.
An injury to one is an injury to all.
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