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Since Cyril Ramaphosa was elected ANC president in December, there has been rapid change in the political landscape. The most dramatic changes relate to the important issue of wresting back control of the state from the most kleptocratic aspects of the Zuma regime. Unsurprisingly, these developments have tended to overshadow discussion on what a Ramaphosa presidency would aim to do with the state. Impending legislation that would dramatically transform the labour-relations regime may provide a litmus test for where Ramaphosa’s allegiances lie and who the new ANC president regards as his key constituents. A legislative package constituted by the National Minimum Wage Bill, together with amendments to the Basic Conditions of Employment Act and the Labour Relations Act is now before Parliament. Its agenda constitutes a significant setback for the working class and its ability to represent its interests. The amendments to the Labour Relations Act would weaken the ability of workers to s...

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