Banking group Absa, a subsidiary of the UK’s Barclays Group plc, has notified the trade union Solidarity that it intends taking legal action in order to close down the webpage www.stopabsa.co.za which is part of Solidarity’s Stop Absa campaign.
The trade union launched the Stop Absa campaign earlier this week in reaction to what it called the bank’s controversial restructuring process which it claims has already led to several retrenchments.
According to a letter Solidarity received from Absa’s attorneys Adams & Adams in Pretoria, Absa plans to seek a High Court interdict in order to close down the Stop Absa webpage and to force the union to discontinue the use of an altered version of Absa’s slogan, Today, Tomorrow, Together, on the webpage.
According to Dirk Hermann, Deputy General Secretary of Solidarity, the trade union is considering changing the campaign’s slogan from “Today, Tomorrow, Goodbye”, to “Today, Tomorrow, To Court”.
“We are looking forward to seeing Absa in court to defend our constitutional right to freedom of speech and fair social comment. The Stop Absa campaign represents the voice of thousands of South Africans.
On every front, wherever we turn, in some small way, a court stands poised to either protect the right of free speech …