The South African Federation of Trade Unions (Saftu) national strike is underway.
Cosatu's spokesperson Patrick Craven says the union has over 700 000 members making it the second largest trade union federation in the country.
The union is protesting against the proposed minimum living wage.
We are objecting to the proposed minimum wage and various amendments to the labour laws which still haven't been passed. They have to go back to Parliament. They are currently being redrafted and of course, we will need to see what emerges from the redrafting process.— Patrick Craven, Saftu spokesperson
Craven says despite the fact that President Ramaphosa comes from a union background, they fear that he is driving the interests of big business.
The policies Ramaphosa is adopting seem to be far more geared to serving the interests of big business, attracting investment, which of course we don't object to investment, but that must not be the main priority. The main priority should be to create jobs; reduce poverty and particularly in relation to this dispute about the minimum wage.— Patrick Craven, Saftu spokesperson
Meanwhile, the Right2Know Campaign joined the strike and says the right to strike is a critical provision to South Africa's democracy and protected by the Constitution.
The Right2Know Campaign is dealing with freedom of expression and we think this one is a very critical one, which of course the workers are entitled too.— Meshengu Tshabalala, Gauteng Right2Know Spokesperson
Listen to the full interviews below: