Cosatu general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi has been axed by the trade union federation.

An embattled Cosatu was expected to announce the news at a media briefing tomorrow following its Central Executive Committee (CEC) meeting.

News of Vavi’s expulsion started spreading and trending on social media earlier this evening.

This comes amid wide predictions that the axe that had been hanging over his head would finally fall on him this week.

Cosatu sent out an invitation to the media for a press briefing on the special CEC – it is here where the federation would then make it official that Vavi has been ousted as its general secretary.

Sources revealed that Vavi stood no chance with 31 members voting for his dismissal against only one who wanted him to stay.

This comes just a few hours after the ANC, Cosatu’s alliance partner, expressed its concerns about what would happen if Vavi was dismissed.

The governing party’s secretary-general Gwede Mantashe said: “Our view is that expelling (Vavi) is the easiest decision. The most complex one is what happens thereafter.”

Mantashe said expelling Vavi was “wrong” and warned that leadership infighting was going to destroy the federation.

“Leaders of Cosatu must appreciate that in their quest and drive to hurt each other they will destroy the federation (and) by the time they wake (up) there will be nothing left of it,” he said.

Vavi was removed in his absence after explaining yesterday that he would not be attending the CEC, saying he was “not convinced that the important task of building unity is on the agenda of this special CEC”.

Vavi also said he had not attended the previous CEC meeting along with other affiliates who said they could not attend unless it was linked to a unity process.

“Nothing has happened since then to convince me that Cosatu is moving in the direction of confronting its nearly three years of paralysis and factionalism,” he said.

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