23 March 2019

Zimbabwe: Mnangagwa Following an Anti-Labour Policy to Please Capital - ZCTU

Labour federation the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU), has accused President Emmerson Mnangagwa's administration of following a policy of "workers' isolation."

ZCTU secretary general, Japhet Moyo in a wide-ranging interview with NewZimbabwe.com Thursday, accused Mnangagwa of following his predecessor former President Robert Mugabe's "anti-workers" stance that is exclusive to capital.

"What government forgets is that ZCTU was part of the November 2017 Highfield Grounds celebrations to mark the ouster of former President Robert Mugabe, where we gave a solidarity speech in support of Mnangagwa because we hoped that he would lead the nation on a new paradigm.

"Disappointingly what we are seeing is exactly the same isolation and victimisation which is even worse than what we witnessed during Mugabe's era," said Moyo.

"Workers continue to be isolated and the bulk of the policies are being implemented without their input."

Mnangagwa came to power on the back of a military coup in November 2017, that was followed by nationwide demonstration by citizens, civil society and the opposition demanding the then Zanu PF leader's resignation.

Mugabe had been placed under house arrest by the army, forced to resign paving the way for Mnangagwa's return from brief exile to take the reins of power.

ZCTU boss, Moyo, said that numerous efforts made by workers representatives have not produced any tangible results because Mnangagwa continues to ignore the several requests made to meet and establish a working platform.

Quizzed on why the unions seem unappreciative of government's austerity measures including reduction of salaries in the presidium and a surplus in excess of RTGS$100 million, Moyo was skeptical of the figures.

"Government has been throwing around a lot figures some of which we doubt their authenticity because they do not translate to visible economic recovery in the country," he said.

He also expressed concern that even when the union called for demonstrations early this year, workers' salaries had already been eroded by Mnangagwa's policies.

"We cannot buy into what Central Bank Governor, John Mangudya's claims that his Monetary Policy Statement (MPS) will restore value. This is because he once promised us that if the Bond Notes fail he was going to resign.

He has not kept his promise and this is reason why workers do not see credibility in such policies," Moyo added.

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