We don’t eat slogans: Workers

Source: We don’t eat slogans: Workers – DailyNews Live Blessings Mashaya • 2 May 2016

HARARE – With Zimbabweans joining the rest of the world in marking Workers Day, the Zimbabwe Federation of Trade Unions (ZFTU) — which is closely linked to Zanu PF — says workers do not eat political slogans but rather want government to offer solutions to revive the dying industries.

In a statement to mark Workers Day yesterday, ZFTU president Alfred Makwarimba said government should stop politicking on economic issues and put in place policies that attract investment.

“Fellow workers we say rise up and demand your space in the economic playfield right across the whole enterprises spectrum of our industrial domain,” the statement reads.

“… there is no shortcut no easy solutions towards reviving our industries, safeguarding our jobs let alone revamping our nose diving economy. Slogans will not give our workers salaries and pensions nor will blaming our failures to the outside world bring a panacea to our economic problems.”

Makwarimba said government should speed up the finalisation of labour reforms laws.

“Economic development in any given country on this planet earth demands reasonable application of basic principles of existing situation and aggressive conversion of unpleasant facts or objects into something more palatable to the society.

“Government should finalise labour reforms before September 2016 to ensure that the widespread unfair terminations are stopped. We also urge our government to ensure that collective bargaining is accessed by all workers and strikes are not criminalised at law.”

Makwarimba also said government must start creating employment especially in the agriculture sector.

“We will not from now on allow a handful of individual capitalists to put our nation into jeopardy economically, nor allow them anymore to reduce efforts being scarified by thousands of our workers in safeguarding and preserving our economic power base into ashes, we  have stood up let’s take charge of our country’s economic narratives.

“It is time government starts creating employment in the agriculture sector through robust scientific planning on land sizes, title tenure and production financing and opening new markets within our boarders and the rest of Africa.”

Noting strides made by government initiating the “constitution-making process which led to the enshrinement of rights to collective bargaining, right to salaries and wages, right to strike among others as constitutional obligation,” the federation said more has to be done.

Under Zanu PF’s rule, companies have shut down and with the governing party trapped in an internal succession war, there is seemingly no respite for the plus 80 percent of the total population that is unemployed.