ZCTU plots more govt confrontation over economic decay

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By Alois Vinga

THE Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) is set to brave another government backlash following its plans to stage an anti-government protest over the fast deteriorating economic situation in the country.

This emerged in a letter written to affiliate groups by the workers’ federation on Thursday.

The decision was reached at following a ZCTU general council meeting which resolved another government confrontation.

According to the memo, affiliate unions are to mobilise for a demonstration.

“I refer you to the above matter, on 11 October 2019, the General Council met at Jameson Hotel and decided to call for national action as workers are incapacitated to go to work among other economic issues affecting the working class,” reads the ZCTU memo in part.

“You are therefore being kindly requested to start mobilising workers in earnest for this action whose form and dates would be communicated to you in a few days’ time.”

ZCTU secretary general Japhet Moyo confirmed the development.

“The general council made the resolution after noticing that the state of incapacitation for most workers has reached alarming levels,” Moyo said.

“Workers are going into debt as they borrow heavily to report for duty. Salaries have been eroded to almost nothing as compared to cost of goods and services.

“We are just responding to what workers are saying that they are unable to regularly report for duty,” he said.

The call comes shortly after the state withdrew charges against Moyo and the ZCTU president Peter Mutasa who were facing charges of subversion for allegedly organising the violent January anti-government protests which elicited an angry state reaction leading to the killing of 17 civilians by security forces.

Last week, Mutasa criticised Ncube’s 2020 national budget for having too little for workers to celebrate describing it as “bookish and elitist while being presented under a cloud of fictitious achievements and self-praise”.

ZCTU- government relations have been very stiff as the latter has never taken the former’s concerns seriously on suspicions that they are being used as a front by the opposition political outfit, MDC.