ZCTU gives Bata seven-day ultimatum to remit union dues

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By Alois Vinga

THE Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) has given Bata Shoe Company a seven-day ultimatum to remit union dues or face legal action.

This comes amid reports management at the shoemaker was forcing employees to agree to remit their dues to a rival union in the sector.

A letter written to Bata Shoe Company by ZCTU secretary general, Japhet Moyo recently confirms that the firm is at loggerheads with the federation’s recently registered affiliate.

“Our affiliate, Footwear and Tanners Allied Workers Union of Zimbabwe (FTAWUZ), has submitted to your office names and forms of more than 500 members which they organised in your sector.

“The request was for you to effect and remit to the union which you are reluctant to action,” said Moyo.

The deductions of subscriptions through the check-off system were supposed to be effected for March and April 2020 in terms of Statutory Instrument 246 of 1993.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, some workers at a Harare Bata branch claimed a named company boss was threatening them with retrenchment if they did not withdraw their membership from FTAWUZ in favour of the rival union.

But in the letter to the firm, Moyo insists the management’s stance was illegal as it violated FTAWUZ’s guaranteed rights since the union was duly registered by the labour ministry in terms of the country’s laws.

Moyo said the stance by the company also contradicted the Labour Act Chapter 28:01 from which SI 246 derives its authority.

According to the ZCTU chief, SI states that, “If an employee wishes to join the trade union, it will be the union’s responsibility to action the necessary procedures, to send the necessary stop order forms to the employer”.

Moyo added, “The ZCTU awaits response from you in the next seven days failure to which we shall take measures to get restitution for our affiliate through the law.” could however not readily get comment from Bata Shoe Company.