Source: Restore workers’ dignity: President | The Herald May 1, 2019
Press statement by His Excellency, Cde E.D. Mnangagwa, President of the Republic of Zimbabwe, on the occasion of the Workers’ Day celebrations 1 May 2019
Fellow workers of Zimbabwe
On behalf of the Government of Zimbabwe, I am honoured to address you on the eve of our 2019 International Workers’ Day Celebrations.
As I do so, I pay tribute and recognise the role played by workers of our great nation in building the national economy and sustaining families.
Since pre-Independence, workers have been a vital part of our country’s socio-political and economic dynamics.
The fight against workplace exploitation gave rise and growth to the trade union movements, which were an indispensable stimulus to political consciousness of the black majority.
We, thus, acknowledge and recognise the part workers played in the struggle for national Independence, always guided by national interests.
To date, you the workers continuously keep our nation on its feet and running, in spite of the hardships you may face from time to time.
However, as I declared on the occasion of our 39th Independence celebrations, we must no longer merely survive, now is the time for us to blossom, thrive and prosper as a nation, as a people. As workers, you are an integral cog as we drive towards the attainment of Vision 2030. We appreciate and salute the contributions, hard work and sacrifices that you continue to make in building our great nation.
You are a sector that we are giving due attention in the Second Republic. We know that with you as partners, we will realise the modernisation, industrialisation, growth and prosperity of our economy. Working together, Zimbabwe shall surely rise again!
Allow me to also acknowledge the role being played by Zimbabwean workers in the Diaspora. We recognise the contribution you continue to make to our motherland through your remittances and the sustenance of your families. We applaud your efforts, hard work and sacrifices.
As we celebrate this year’s Workers’ Day, let me reassure you that my Government is fully aware of the challenges faced by the labour sector. As we continue on the path of development and progress, I challenge employers to use this day as an opportunity to reflect and evaluate the welfare, remuneration, conditions of service, safety and state of workers, among other issues.
My 2019 Independence Day Address was loud and clear, we must restore the purchasing power of workers. Our transport system must be viable; housing delivery, clean water, sanitation and energy must be adequate and affordable. In this regard, I recently unveiled a fleet of ZUPCO buses which will ease the transport costs in both urban and rural areas.
The comprehensive housing delivery programme and the smart cities concept will see better living conditions for our workers.
Through the ease of doing business reforms, we will continue to encourage and facilitate more exports across all sectors, which should translate to improved business performance and ultimately better conditions of service for you, the workers.
Meanwhile, energy projects such as the Hwange Thermal Power Station 7 and 8 will, upon completion, ensure reliable and adequate power supplies to industry; increased capacity utilisation; growth of a more diversified manufacturing sector and ultimately more employment options for our workers.
My administration under the Second Republic is committed to restoring the decency and dignity of all workers. We are, however, deeply concerned by the counter-productive machinations by uncaring, insensitive, irresponsible, inhuman and unpatriotic numbers of industry, business and commerce who continue to frustrate and undermine the economic, modernisation and industrialisation agenda. The wanton, unjustified increases in prices are unpalatable and may point to some other sinister motives. This conduct must stop forthwith.
My Government will not stand by and leave workers and the generality of our people at the mercy of a small group with rent seeking and profiteering tendencies.
I urge you the workers of Zimbabwe, to remain resilient, hopeful and focused as we accelerate our determination and resolve to build the Zimbabwe we all want.
I call for the protection of women against all forms of violence and abuse in the workplace. Let us also desist from child labour; foster fair and equal treatment; provide equal employment opportunities to all, including people living with disabilities.
Grievances and differences must be settled through the correct procedures. As is the culture of the Second Republic, dialogue is key, hard honest work is fundamental and corruption of any kind must be exposed and reported, wherever it occurs. Each and every one of us has a role to play in building our great country.
Fellow workers of Zimbabwe;
Be rest assured that my Government will continue to protect and be the guarantor to the constitutionally enshrined rights of all workers. Our freedom and Independence was won through hard work, unity and sacrifice.
Let us, therefore; all celebrate this 2019 Workers’ Day with renewed strength, determination, hope, solidarity and unity.
In unity we shall stand! In unity and hard work, prosperity is certain!
God bless workers of Zimbabwe.
God bless Zimbabwe.
I thank you.