By Alois Vinga
THE Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) has called on the government to put in place measures to protect citizens from harassment by security officers on their way to work during the ongoing Covid-19 lockdown.
Secretary general, Japhet Moyo said the labour group has noted with concern the harassment of workers and other citizens on their way to work by members of the security forces despite having genuine papers allowing them to travel.
“Government must come out clear on all the requirements for workers and put in place measures to avoid unnecessary harassment,” Moyo said.
“We have seen workers being made to walk long distances after being forced to disembark from lawful public and private transport for no apparent reason.”
Moyo said it was worrying that people were just being told no one was allowed to go into CBDs without any apparent reason.
He said what made it worse was government’s failure to communicate clearly on what its new lockdown measures entailed.
“The way people are made to wait at various checkpoints and returned home is dehumanising of the highest order.
“Why should it take workers a cumulative six hours to go to work and return home? The country has no fuel and getting transport has become a nightmare,” he said.
Moyo said the current treatment exposed workers since the security forces did not have a standard checklist of what was needed at the numerous checkpoints ending up using their discretion which inconvenienced citizens.
He said there was no guarantee over workers’ safety as they were made to walk to and from work.
“The ZCTU would want to know from the state if the country has suspended the Constitution and has resorted to rule by decrees issued without due regard to people’s freedoms as enshrined in the Constitution,” he added.