GOVERNMENT aligned labour unions staged separate Workers Day celebrations in Chinhoyi Monday after the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Union (ZCTU) rejected a proposal for joint commemorations.
The ZCTU staged its own event in Harare which was addressed by opposition MDC-T leader and former prime minister Morgan Tsvangirai.
Labour and Social Services Minister Prisca Mupfumira officiated at the Chinhoyi event where she urged unity among the country's unions.
"Let us hold hands rather than build fences as May Day is a celebration for all workers whether blue collar, white collar and irrespective of your cultural, political or ethnic orientation," she said.
"You must create open lines of communication with officials from the ministry so that they cogitate on issues to do with the world of work."
Ruling Zanu PF party-linked union such as the Zimbabwe Federation of Trade Unions, Zimbabwe Industrial Revolution Workers Federation, Trade Union Congress of Zimbabwe and the civil service APEX Council gathered attended the Chinhoyi celebrations.
Mupfumira called upon employers and employees to continue to work with Government.
"We need each other to build our nation as there is only one workforce and one nation," she said.
"Government will not, and can never, forget its workers for they are at the very core of an empowered society which our economic blueprint (ZIMASSET) seeks to create.
"Government recognizes your sacrifice, discipline, perseverance, commitment and most importantly your patriotism and commitment to a better future for your families and ultimately for Zimbabwe."
She continued; "It is with this in mind that Government this year worked with organised labour here present in holding theses commemorations.
"I want to thank the federations of trade unions that have come together united to celebrate the workers of Zimbabwe."
Also present were Zanu PF Members of Parliament such as Marble Chinomona, Joseph Chinotimba, Keith Guzah, Kindness Paradza and government ministers Sithembiso Nyoni (SMEs), Josiah Hungwe (Psycho Motor), Sydney Sekeramai (Defence) and Social Services deputy minister Tapiwa Matangaidze.