By Alois Vinga
WORKERS’ groups across the globe Wednesday sent protest letters to President Emmerson Mnangagwa while several staged protests at Zimbabwe embassies in various countries over the deplorable working conditions in Zimbabwe.
The solidarity event was coordinated by the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC).
The 207 million people membership organisation with affiliate member organisation in 163 countries headquartered in Brussels, Belgium set aside 23 September as the Global Day of Solidarity with Zimbabwean workers.
The Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) is affiliated to ITUC.
ITUC instructed its affiliates to take action against the Zimbabwean government that includes protests at the country’s embassies and petitioning the country’s head of state as well as carrying out social media campaigns to highlight the plight of Zimbabwean workers, non -respect of rights and the demand for a better wage.
The latest ITUC global labour rights index ranks Zimbabwe among the world’s 10 worst countries for employees.
The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (NUMSA) spokesperson, Phakamile Hlubi-Majola, said mobilised members picketed in three cities which include Pretoria where a memorandum was handed over at the Zimbabwe High Commission, in Johannesburg and Bellville.
“We reject the violent, authoritarian regime of Zanu PF under the leadership of Emmerson Mnangagwa. The picket is an expression of solidarity with the working class in that country who are suffering under the tyranny of the state,” said Hlubi-Majola in a statement.
In another solidarity message, the Communist Party of Greece denounced the persecution and repression by the country’s authorities against cadres of the trade union movement that struggle demanding their contemporary rights.
The Communist Party of Turkey said it saluted the resistance of Zimbabwean workers against poverty, corruption, various levels of oppression and police brutality. We salute your struggle for a better living for all under humane and egalitarian conditions.
The Communist Party of Britain Secretary General, Robert Griffiths urged the Zimbabwean government to protect the benefits of the liberation war for the good and benefit of all citizens.
“We write in support of your demands that the achievements of Zimbabwe’s national liberation struggle be protected, that your people are able to keep their rightful occupation of the land of Zimbabwe, that those providing social services in health and education are paid a wage that meets their needs and that all be provided with the dignity of work,” he said.
The developments come at a time when Zimbabwe’s inflation rates have reached a ten year high of 800% resulting in massive erosion of workers’ wages and pushing trade unions to demand US$ denominated wages.