State entities join firing bandwagon

via State entities join firing bandwagon | The Herald August 3, 2015

Parastatals and State-linked enterprises have joined the bandwagon of firms that are firing employees upon issuing them with three months’ notices following a recent Supreme Court ruling permitting that. Information gathered yesterday showed that many parastatals offloaded an undisclosed number of employees last week.

The Zimbabwe National Roads Administration (Zinara) confirmed that it had laid off about 50 employees, although unconfirmed reports say more than 300 employees were sent packing.

Zinara board chairman Mr Albert Mugabe said: “If Zinara were to terminate 300 contracts, there would be no one left. Sending people home was a last resort and one that we really tried to keep to a minimum. In total the figure is less than 50. However, a big chunk of management was affected.

“It’s also important to note that reduction of the number of employees is just one of a raft of measures that we have instituted to rein in our admin costs.”

The Central Mechanical and Equipment Department (CMED) also dismissed almost 200 employees last week.

A letter signed by the acting managing director, Mr Tambirai Nhongonhema to the dismissed employees reads: “This letter serves to inform you that the business has decided to terminate your employment contract on notice. This is not a dismissal but rather the exercise of our right under common law, which allows either party to terminate the employment contract on notice.

“In accordance with provisions of Section 12 (4) of the Labour Act, we hereby give you three months notice to terminate your contract of employment. The notice shall start to run on delivery of this letter to you or to the domicile that you chose under your employment contract or such address notified to the human resources by you in writing.”

A highly-placed source confirmed saying, “Yes, we sent home 200 workers last week.”

National Railways of Zimbabwe was also reported to have fired more than 300 employees, but the company’s public relations manager Mr Fanuel Masikati declined to comment on the matter.

Air Zimbabwe and Zimpost were said to have served an undisclosed number of employees with contract termination letters.

The national airline’s acting chief executive Mr Edmund Makona, yesterday was not answering his phone to clarify the matter.

Zesa was also reported to have done the same but its spokesperson Mr Fullard Gwasira yesterday denied the claim.

“As Zesa, we always seek to maximise shareholder and customer service value,” he said. “As a result, processes are always looked at to make them more efficient and cost-effective to stakeholders but Zesa is not retrenching at the moment.”

But, a Zesa manager who declined to be named said, “Those who have been dismissed have had their contracts terminated before the Supreme Court ruling. However, this is not to say there is nothing of that nature because management might have to sit with human resources management without the knowledge of other managers.”

Labour expert Mr Rodgers Matsikidze, yesterday said even if the law was to be amended there would be no recourse for those who have already been affected.

He said it was imperative for Government to intervene by way of a Statutory Instrument like what happened in the case of PSMAS.

“Those people who have been dismissed have gone just like that,” he said.

“There will be no package for them and after three months, those people will be social welfare dependants.

“Government should have put in place a provisional law like what happened to PSMAS. If you can protect PSMAS, why can’t you protect workers?”

It is understood that more 9 000 people have lost their jobs since the Supreme Court ruling of July 17, and trade unions are appealing for a presidential decree to stop the unilateral sacking of employees.

Government has appealed to companies to exercise maximum restraint, while the Labour Act is being amended.

Meanwhile, President Mugabe will not invoke Presidential Powers to stop wholesale job losses triggered by the recent Supreme Court ruling.

Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa, speaking in Parliament last Wednesday, said President Mugabe could not intervene as the Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare Prisca Mupfumira was working on strategies to address the situation.

He said it was not necessary for Government to invoke Presidential Powers until Minister Mupfumira, mandated to deal with the matter, seeks those powers.

He was responding to MDC-T Mkoba legislator Amos Chibaya, who had asked if Government had any intentions to invoke Presidential Powers to avert the decimation of the country’s labour force.

“May I advise the Honourable member that the structure of Government is such that mandates are given to particular ministers and until the minister who has the mandate to deal with that issue seeks those powers, it is not necessary for us to intervene,” said VP Mnangagwa.

“I’m aware of what the Minister is doing because that is not the only avenue available to the Minister to deal with the situation. There are other avenues and legal approaches which can be used, which are faster than using Presidential Powers to deal with the issue.

“I am fortunate that I am also the Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs, so I am fully aware of what the Minister has crafted and what the Minister will soon present as a solution to the challenge.”

VP Mnangagwa, who commended the Zimbabwe Federation of Trade Union (ZFTU) for taking part in a meeting convened last Monday by Government to finalise amendments to the Labour Act, said Government was also studying the judgment.

The MDC-T-aligned Zimbabwe Congress for Trade Unions (ZCTU) snubbed the meeting.


  • comment-avatar
    ananian 7 years ago

    As one of the stakeholders my life in Zimbabwe has been reduced to the lowest level hence I hereby terminate the employment of the following employees of the state.
    1. Robert Gabriel Mugabe for gross in competence, negligent, corruption and thievery. In 1980 when he was appointed PM of Zimbabwe, life standard and welfare of the sharholders was better and now it not even comparable to any country. A loaf of bread used to cost 22 cents now that currency is not even there. The litre of fuel used to cost 35 cent now its not even there. A drink used to cost. 8 cents. The country used to have employment above 80 % now unemployment is 90%. GDP growth was 12.5% most of you 35 years it has been zero or negative. When you were with MDC T it improved marginal but in all your tenure you never reach 12%
    2. Tobayiwa Mudede you are here by notified that your emploment contract is terminated for gross in competence and negligent and derilect of duty: the voter’ role has been in shambles since you took over from the Smith Regime. No election has been monitored by international monitors since 1990 and all have resulted in complaints and you have failed on numerous occassions to register and update it. There are numerous people over 100 years on voter roll and other below 10 years eligible to vote contrary ti you voting acts
    3. Chiwenga you are now a politician contrary to the Defense act that states that you should be apoltical. You been said to be political commissar of ZANU PF and even afforded helicopter at political functions of ZANU PF. Your military men have utter careless statements against other politicians with immunity from you. You not fit for office.
    4. Chinamasa your contract is terminated with notice. Ever since your appointment in ministry of Justice, there was never justice in Zimbabwe. Now you in Finance, there is no financial stability in the country.
    5. Tomana you misled the government on age of consent
    6. Chidyausiku, you were wrongly appointed from Judge Presisent of High Court to Chief Justice and you went on recently to preside over flawed ruling causing much suffering of the innocent people 9000 in short
    7. Obert Mpofu, $12,9 billions diamonds worth un accounted. You are fired on 3 months notice.
    8. Chombo on 3 months notice, you cause much suffering during Murambatsvina, amazed a lot of property during your tenure at local government and mis managed municipality. No Municipality is able to collect refuse, provide water and roads and houses for residents as in early 1980 and 90s

    If I had powers I would surely dismiss these above for failing in their mandate. Betraying the trust given to them. In some cases they imposed them selves and went on to perform so badly without shame or remose.

  • comment-avatar
    tonyme 7 years ago

    Is this an attempt to shrink the bloated human resources in government paradtatals? Why pass a law that hurts the rest of the nation. Most Chefs who are also employers feel immune and are laying off people without mercy. All these njobless people ha e and should respond at the poles come election time.