Zimbabwe: Panicking Govt Reconvenes TNF As Economy Faces Implosion

Angry Citizens in Zimbabwe shutdown protests.
13 January 2019

Government has called for a Tripartite Negotiation Forum (TNF) with its key partners Monday after over a year since such meeting was convened.

The TNF is a dialogue platform which brings together government, business and labour representatives to deliberate on economic issues and pursue mutual agreement that does not hurt any of the parties' interests.

The Zanu PF led administration is under fire for dumping its partners within the grouping to pursue unilateral but often disastrous decisions that have triggered a labour unrest last seen nearly two decades ago.

The forum last met a year ago as government has been reluctant to share its vision with other partners through the forum.

Government has since swallowed its pride and invited labour and business representatives to the Monday forum.

The Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU), a key partner in the group, has confirmed the development but expressed doubt any meaningful deliberations could be made.

"Yes we received the invitation and we are preparing our submissions to the forum on behalf of the country's workers," said ZCTU secretary general, Japhet Moyo.

"Like we have said before, we lack serious partnership especially on the part of government.

"The Ministry of Labour seems not influential in cabinet or within the power dynamics of the ruling elite.

"Most of our engagements are talk shows with no bearing in broader policy direction within the ruling elite."

He said since time immemorial, there has been talk of a social contract and in many instances, government has been dragging its feet.

"The good example is the Kadoma Declaration that was launched by then President RG Mugabe.

"We still have the same country risk factors hindering investment. Unilateralism is another big challenge and this is going to be worsened by the current philosophy being pursued by Finance Minister, Mthuli Ncube who believes that he is a supersonic with answers to everything and does not see the value of social dialogue or talking about a social contract."

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