via ZCTU plans mass action – DailyNews Live 27 July 2014 by Godfrey Mtimba
MASVINGO – Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) is mooting plans to unfurl worker protests over deepening economic hardships.
ZCTU president George Nkiwane told a Labour forum here on Thursday night that the state of the economy and the status of workers was getting worse by the day.
“We are facing a doomed future with the rate at which the economy is crumbling and government seems to be not concerned,” Nkiwane said.
“So, as workers we need to say enough is enough and take action to force government to fix the economy. The situation needs the urgency now from workers.”
Nkiwane said the economic meltdown was posing a serious threat to workers’ survival, as some were going for over six months without salaries while hundreds of companies were shutting down.
Workers who attended the Labour forum concurred with their leadership on the need to engage in urgent street protests to push government to find an economic solution.
“Cde President, we have nothing to wait for, the situation is appalling and our families as workers are suffering, we cannot continue to have this, so I say let’s go for protest, tinoti ngachitsve,” a worker contributed to the forum.
Nkiwane said the ZCTU leadership was holding the Labour forums countrywide to seek permission from workers to engage in mass action.
“As the ZCTU leadership, we are your servants, that’s why we are moving around the country to seek permission from you as to what sort of action to take,” Nkiwane said. “But since you have indicated here in Masvingo that protests is the way to go, we will have to get the nod from other regions and we can do as you want.”
Workers said they were shocked by President Robert Mugabe’s recent assertions that the economy was on the mend.
“For some from the country’s highest office to say the economy was on the mend was shocking, may be the old man was hallucinating or we do not live in the same Zimbabwe with him,” said one worker.
“People are suffering and this is clear to everyone that the economy is further decaying.”