Gala Dinner thank you: Frikkie de Bruin
Honourable, Minister Patel
President of ILERA, Prof Evance Kalula,
Judge President of the Labour Court, Judge Wagley
President Elect, Prof Dong, One-Kim,
Past President, Prof Janice Bellace,
Secretary General, Mr Moussa Oumarou,
Interim President of IRASA, Prof Emer. Johann Maree,
Members of the EXCO of ILERA,
Members of the LOC and SC of ILERA 2015,
Partners & sponsors,
Distinguished guests and delegates;
I am privileged and honoured to address this gala dinner of the 17th World Congress of ILERA, and provide a word of thanks on behalf of the local organizing committee,
I would however be failing if I did not highlight some of the achievements of this Congress thus far.
We are pleased to have a record attendance of 691 delegates out of the 704 registrations, from across 40 countries including 184 speakers.
Our conference APP although a relatively new innovation for the congress has been downloaded and utilised by more than 200 delegates. We are proud to have introduced this technology to this congress.
Minister Ebrahim Patel
It is my pleasure to share a few thoughts with you, after what seems to have been a most interesting but packed Conference programme.
Many of you are visitors to our shores and I hope you had a good stay and will leave with beautiful memories of South Africa.
You have visited your ancestral lands, for this is the cradle of humanity, the continent where our story as human beings began.
And today you were in SA when a remarkably important scientific announcement was made, namely the discovery of the single largest hominin fossil collection, with more than 1 550 fossil bones that were found in the Sterkfontein area about 50 km north-west of Johannesburg. The discovery suggests a new species of ancient human ancestor, which has been named now as Homo Naledi.
In this period of your stay, or perhaps as you travelled here, the migration challenges that Europe faces made global headlines.
You may have seen the harrowing picture of a young Syrian boy, curled up and lying in the shallow water on the Mediterranean shoreline, his lifeless body pulling at the humanity within all of us.
The discovery of Homo Naledi underlines the long journey of humanity, from our early ancestors who migrated from this continent, possibly – who knows? – in search of food or a better life that led to the species populating the rest of the world. And the Syrian boy is the tragic story of people migrating from a war-zone in order to find a better, safer life.
Thank you for your participation in an instructive, fruitful and enjoyable Congress.
The changing world of work has had a profound impact on the definition and content of work and power relationships and the resulting scope of protection and coverage, structures of collective engagement, conflict resolution, voice and representation in both the developed world and emerging markets, and for private and public employment sectors. This also raises questions about the appropriateness of and need to revisit current regulatory frameworks, including international standards,in an attempt to help address this fast-changing scenario.
Innovative labour and employment relations, labour law and social security (among others the social protection floor, the decent work agenda) responses have been called on to accommodate new contexts, including the many challenges facing the traditional concept, sphere and boundaries of these domains. These developments and their implications, also for distinct categories of workers, including informal and migrant workers, will be debated at the 17th ILERA World Congress, and will address six core themes.