The ITF has paid tribute to Tabudi Abner Ramakgolo, a founding member of South African Transport and Allied Workers Union (SATAWU) and former ITF regional chair for Africa, who has died.
Brother Tabudi worked tirelessly as an activist organiser, bringing together workers in transport, cleaning and the security sectors on behalf of SATAWU. He began his career at SATAWU as national sector coordinator for road freight, and his organisational knowledge and understanding was central to SATAWU’s early growth. He was also crucial in ensuring that the COSATU (Congress of South African Trade Unions) resolution, ‘One Union, One Industry, One Federation and One Country’, was effectively administered.
Brother Tabudi held a number of significant roles in the ITF, including the position of chair on the Africa regional committee until 2018. He played a key role in the Africa regional review, and subsequently the restructuring of the Africa regional committee.
Brother Tabudi was part of an ITF high-level mission to Swaziland to investigate violations against members of the STAWU union. Driven by his conviction that ‘an injury to one is an injury to all’ he helped to secure the release of one of the STAWU leaders.
His death is a great loss to the union movement in South Africa, and the world. The ITF extends its deepest condolences to Brother Tabudi’s family, friends, colleagues and comrades. The ITF will be forever grateful for Brother Tabudi’s contribution to the trade union movement; and for his fortitude, dynamism and dedication to his work.