24 March 2021
The Federation of Unions of South Africa (FEDUSA) is delighted by the appointment of Chris de Vos, the former Secretary General of the United National Transport Union’s (UNTU), its affiliate in the passenger railway sector to the Board of the Rail Safety Regulator (RSR).
FEDUSA says the announcement of the appointment in Parliament by Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula is a very important feat for FEDUSA, its affiliates and the public at large. This is because de Vos will be representing organized labour as whole on the Board and not just FEDUSA.
“I hereby appoint you as a member of the Board of the RSR representing organised labour, effective immediately. I wish you the very best with your role on the Board. I trust that your experience and expertise will be of great benefit to the Board,” Minister Mbalula said in his letter of appointment to de Vos.
FEDUSA General Secretary Riefdah Ajam said rail safety plays a very important function for any democratic society as many working people are dependent on our rail transport to commute to work as well as for long-distance travel to visit their loved ones.
“This mode of transport has been one of South Africa’s cheapest forms of commuting; and when it cannot operate due to wage negotiation strikes and or maintenance issues, it leaves many workers in South Africa stranded,” said Ajam.
“FEDUSA is very pleased that Chris de Vos has been appointed to the RSR Board since he has been actively involved in the railway transport industry for many years advocating for rail safety and the improvement thereof, in a bid to enhance this form of transportation for the comfort of all. However more so de Vos has also actively and greatly contributed to the concept of Decent Work by leading UNTU in peaceful and very successful wage negotiations; consistently placing worker rights first”.
Also, in the context of the numerous accidents in Cape Town at the railway crossing, de Vos has strongly advocated for the safety of all railway crossing through the application of a Section 77 Protest Action Notice to NEDLAC on level crossings in an attempt to bring awareness to the hazards that still exist in South Africa regarding these.
FEDUSA commends De Vos for all these initiatives and wishes him well and trust that he will add great value to the work of the Portfolio Committee on Transport.
For interviews please contact:
Ms Riefdah Ajam
FEDUSA General Secretary
079 696 2625
Mr Ashley Benjamin
FEDUSA Deputy General Secretary
083 258 4433
Mr Chris de Vos
082 882 5920
FEDUSA Media and Research Officer
072 637 8096