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On the day the FM arrives to meet SA’s new registrar for labour relations, his office resembles an overflowing filing cabinet. Files dating back to 2012 are all over the place. But advocate Lehlohonolo Molefe, the man entrusted with restoring regulatory compliance among SA’s employee and employer organisations, in the interest of healthy labour relations, says a "huge task" awaits him. Molefe was appointed as by labour minister Mildred Oliphant in May.

Two months into the job, he has unearthed a backlog of cases dealing with the state of SA’s 193 trade unions, 153 employer organisations and 54 collective bargaining councils. He takes up the role after months of paralysis in the labour registrar’s office due to disputes between his predecessor, Johan Crouse, and Oliphant. Molefe’s job is to ensure that registered labour relations organisations comply with the Labour Relations Act (LRA) by being accountable for their finances, operating in line with set constitutions and champio...

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