The Star Early Edition - - FRONT PAGE - MASABATA MKWANANZI @Sa­bie_M

Joyce Seroke at­tends a me­mo­rial ser­vice for trade union­ist and po­lit­i­cal leader Emma Mashinini in the Joburg City Hall. Her fam­ily was forcibly dis­placed sev­eral times dur­ing her child­hood.

LE­GENDARY trade union­ist Emma “Tiny” Mashinini was yes­ter­day lauded as a leader who rose above the lim­its that were set against her and al­ways put oth­ers first.

Mashinini died on Mon­day in Joburg at the age of 87. She was one of South Africa’s most for­mi­da­ble trade union­ists and a re­cip­i­ent of the Or­der of the Baobab and the Or­der of Luthuli.

Louise Thipe, pres­i­dent of South African Com­mer­cial, Cater­ing and Al­lied Work­ers Union, led the trib­utes for the Strug­gle stal­wart.

Thipe said the trade union­ist kept abreast with the de­vel­op­ments in the coun­try right up to her last day and did not shy away from rais­ing her con­cerns.

“Mashinini was very crit­i­cal of the state of the coun­try, we all know what is go­ing on… some­thing must be done,” said Thipe.

She said Mashinini would al­ways re­mind them of how “she was ap­pointed by the bosses but was elected by work­ers”.

Mashinini al­ways rep­re­sented the work­ers in the best way she knew pos­si­ble and that’s were her loy­alty al­ways was, Thipe said.

Mashinini played a huge role in the lib­er­a­tion of the coun­try. She started work­ing in the gar­ment in­dus­try when she was just 14 after her par­ents’ sep­a­ra­tion left her mother un­able to sup­port the fam­ily, Thipe added.

She be­came an or­gan­iser for the Gar­ment Work­ers Union, and helped to se­cure a 40-hour work week and un­em­ploy­ment in­sur­ance.

The fu­neral ser­vice was at 8am to­mor­row at St Al­ban’s Cathe­dral in Pre­to­ria.


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