Tired of protesting from the sidelines against what it deems anti-poor, anti-worker policies, the National Union of Metalworkers of SA (Numsa) has registered its own political party. The Socialist Revolutionary Workers’ Party (SRWP) is unlike any other formed out of disgruntlement with the ANC. While those failed to amass large support bases and build sustainable organisations, the SRWP enters the scene well resourced. It’s backed by a 300,000-strong trade union (SA’s biggest) and has ready-made constituencies across the country as a result. However, the SRWP’s founders have a unique burden: while building the party from the ground up, they will have to fulfil the union mandate of protecting members’ rights in workplaces and ensure the sustained growth of the year-old SA Federation of Trade Unions. Has Numsa bitten off more than it can chew? The party has been on the cards since the 2013 Numsa special congress, at which the union denounced the ANC, decrying a "political vacuum" that...

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