Worker unions from all over the world are coming together for a common goal as they attempt to protect union employees in South Africa.
Representatives have already flown in from unions in countries like Mexico and Chile to assist the South Africa Commercial, Catering and Allied Workers Union (Saccawu) to get a case ready to be presented to the Competition Tribunal in a few weeks.
A proposed acquisition of Massmart by Wal-Mart has drawn concerns from the Saccawu. The merger doesn’t present major competition issues, but the Competition Act does require the Competition Commission to gauge public interest implications of any transaction like this.
Wal-Mart will be required to convince national regulators that despite any perceptions of negative impact on quality and quantity of jobs, the majority of public interest will be positive.
Several Wal-Mart operations outside of the United States allow unionized workers, and global unions are already lining up to help the Saccawu as they challenge Wal-Mart on the acquisition.
Saccawu did give notice of its plans to battle Wal-Mart’s deal in several facets of their Anti-Wal-Mart-Coalition. They want to create public awareness, promote debates with politicians and bring persuasive cases to authorities in the Competition Tribunal.
The coalition’s goal is to get binding commitments from Wal-Mart before they are given approval to continue with the Massmart offer.
As the world’s largest private sector employer, Wal-Mart is obviously well known, but there have been rumors as to the treatment of its employees worldwide. Unions will be prepared to protect the working class society as this new venture by Wal-Mart is initiated.