Unions in Africa and the Middle East commit to organize


The African and Middle Eastern affiliates of the BWI met in Johannesburg, South Africa from 26 to 29 August for a regional committee meeting. The meeting began with an intense discussion on the latest social and political developments impacting workers and the trade union movement in Africa and the Middle East.

Following this, the committee discussed and adopted various policies and resolutions as proposed by the Regional Women’s and Youth Committees including a demand that a minimum of one third of all participants in all BWI activities should be women.

Recognizing that organizing is critical to the growth of trade unions in the region and strengthening workers’ power, committee members set a goal to organize 30,000 workers in the region. This ambitious goal was integrated into the Regional Action Plan which was also based on BWI’s global 2018-2021 Strategic Plan. Emphasizing the need for regional autonomy, the committee also adopted a sustainability plan.

The Regional Committee members recognized the leadership and meaningful contributions of Piet Matosa, the former regional president and deputy president of BWI representing the global South.

BWI general secretary Ambet Yuson who was at the meeting commended Piet Matosa for the strong role he played in strengthening BWI regionally and globally. “We honor Piet for his commitment and guidance. He has been an integral part in building the organization in the region.”