Monday 27 February 2017

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SAMWU Eulogy and Tribute to Comrade Boyce Melitafa, Delivered by Portia Lindi, SAMWU National Treasurer

  • Monday, 06 February 2017 08:02
Comrades and friends, in particular the Melitafa family

Please receive our heartfelt condolences, your loss is our loss, your pain is our pain.

His death is not only a loss for his family but the working class and communists in general.
The South African Municipal Workers’ Union is in mourning, we find it very hard to express the pain we feel at the passing of Comrade Boyce Melitafa.

Comrade Boyce died like a soldier, he has impacted many of our lives particularly through his political education. To many of us, he was an educator, a mentor and a philosopher.

I am sure that wherever he is now, he is sitting on the same table with Karl Marx and other philosophers discussion communism. I am sure he has also met Chris Hani and they discussed communism in South Africa in the interest of the broader working class.

Unlike many, Comrade Boyce never abandoned workers and their struggles. Even when he became a councillor, automatically making him our employer, he never abandoned workers.

SAMWU cherishes the relationship we had with the SACP under the leadership of Comrade Boyce. We arranged many marches in municipalities and knew that we could always count on the support of the SACP. We trust that in his memory we will continue to strengthen that relationship so to improve the lives of workers and our communities.

Comrades and friends

In as much as we are mourning, today we are here to celebrate the life of Comrade Boyce. We are here to remember the great contributions he has made in our lives and in particular to municipal workers in general.

In preparation for SAMWU’s 30th anniversary, we interviewed him on the work he has done for SAMWU. Little did we know that he would be giving his last contribution to the union.

We are proud to have had someone of his caliber in our fold. Those who know him from the time he was with SAMWU will tell of the great improvement that the union witnessed. They will tell you how hard he worked to ensure that workers are emancipated.

For those who do not know, Comrade Boyce was with SAMWU from its inception in 1987. He then assisted in laying a solid ground for SAMWU in various fronts to prepare the union for the countless battles we fought to ensure that municipal workers whom he loved dearly were prioritized and that the gains we made were of material benefit to municipal workers of this country.

Comrades and friends

We owe it to Comrade Boyce to ensure that we strengthen SAMWU and continue advancing the working class power towards socialism, an ideology which he bravely championed even when time for him to meet his maker was nearing.

We owe it to him as members and supporters of the ANC, SANCO and the SACP to reclaim our movements and restore them to their former glory.

We owe it to him to ensure that SAMWU continues to grow as it is the only home for municipal workers, a home which Comrade Boyce loved and help build for municipal workers.

We owe it to him to ensure that we work hard to ensure that the ultimate goal of socialism is achieved to we are able to reduce the high levels of inequality, poverty and unemployment in our country.

SAMWU will ensure that as we celebrate our 30th anniversary, fond memories will continue to live among us for many more years to come.

Comrades and friends, today I want to assure you that Comrade Boyce is not dead, his spirit will continue to live among us.

Long live the spirit of Boyce Melitafa long live!