‘Job cuts Zanu PF trick to get votes’

via ‘Job cuts Zanu PF trick to get votes’ – NewsDay Zimbabwe August 21, 2015 by Obey Manayiti

CIVIC society groups, labour experts and opposition parties have accused the Zanu PF government of deliberately creating the current wave of job cuts, which has already affected over 20 000 workers in a bid to later appear as “messiahs” ahead of the 2018 general elections.

This came out during a public discussion forum organised by rights advocacy group Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition in Harare on Wednesday.

MDC leader Welshman Ncube expressed similar sentiments in a statement yesterday saying they suspected Zanu PF was using the Labour Amendment Bill as a trump card so that it would appear as fighting for the workers’ interests.

“The reality is that the mess we find ourselves in rests on the shoulders of Zanu PF. All blame in one place — at the doorstep of Zanu PF,” Ncube said.

“Zanu PF seeks to present itself as the saviour of the working people by the Bill yet it is the sole author of the misfortunes and misery inflicted upon the hardworking people of Zimbabwe,” he said.

Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions vice-president Peter Mutasa accused Zanu PF of “creating” the job losses and prescribing a solution in order to hood-wink the electorate.

“Zanu PF is only thinking about politics. They did this because all they want is to consolidate power and we don’t seem to be learning from this. We must act now because we cannot rely on the legal route anymore,” Mutasa said.

He added: “We must all come together to demonstrate against this. The Labour Bill is like a rubbish bin where you can find something good that will have been already thrown there and bad items as well. The Bill has very few areas where you find progressive clauses that favour workers.”

Progressive Teachers’ Union of Zimbabwe secretary-general Raymond Majongwe warned that the worst was yet to come, adding there was no one really standing up for workers as their unions were involved in “petty and personal wars” that ended up causing divisions in the labour movement and opposition political parties.

Constitutional law expert Lovemore Madhuku said although the July 17 Supreme Court ruling that triggered the job cuts was binding, the judgment was legally bad.

Madhuku said public consultations should have been made before effecting amendments to the Labour Act in order to ensure workers were adequately protected.