Chisumbanje Ethanol plant re-opened in Zimbabwe on March 25, 2013. The Southern African nation has a policy of indigenization and Look East., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
Workers set for May Day celebrations
Tuesday, 30 April 2013 00:00
Workers across the country are expected to attend May Day celebrations slated for tomorrow amid a marked deterioration in their conditions of service and low salaries.
ZCTU secretary general Mr Japhet Moyo called on workers from the union’s 33 affiliate members to support the celebrations, which he said would be observed at 19 centres
Mr Moyo said the main event would be held at Gwanzura Stadium in Harare and would run under the theme, “We Are Under Siege: Organise and Fight On”.
“This theme takes into account the fact that things are not rosy for us. It is a period marked by high rates of dismissal, employers continue to infringe on worker’s conditions of service and most salaries are very low,” said Mr Moyo.
He said Labour and Social Welfare Minister Paurina Mpariwa is expected to address the workers.
“We have lined up a number of activities for the day including solidarity messages from civil society and there is a lot of entertainment,” he said.
Mr Moyo said celebrations were expected to start in the morning and end with a football match after midday.
The Zimbabwe Federation of Trade Unions, however, said celebrating Worker’s Day was more of a mockery than a worthwhile activity as there was nothing to celebrate. ZFTU secretary general Mr Bernard Danda said:
“Unfortunately, we are not having any celebrations in Harare this year because there is nothing to celebrate.
“We have also noted over the past years that workers do not come for Worker’s Day because most of them would have gone for months without getting their salaries and marking the day is just a mockery.”
Mr Danda called for the speeding up of elections saying they were the only solution to problems bedevilling workers.
“No leadership at the moment is looking into the conditions of service for employees because of political discord,” he said.
He said the ZFTU had at one point about 32 affiliate members but most of the companies have since closed due to sanctions-induced hardships.