in

Unions condemn rights violations in Zimbabwe

The violations take place against the backdrop of misery brought by austerity economic policies and annual hyperinflation of over 900 per cent, which has eroded wages.

Police are banning demonstrations, and protestors have been beaten in a clear violation of international workers’ and human rights standards. The Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions president, Peter Mutasa, and secretary general, Japhet Moyo, face treason charges that carry a death penalty.

When the Zimbabwe Hospital Doctors Association acting president, Peter Magombeyi, was abducted by armed men from his home in Harare on 15 September, doctors and nurses in major hospitals went on strike demanding his immediate release. Human rights groups and trade unions joined in the campaign.

Following national and international pressure, the government joined the call for his release, suggesting that he was abducted by a “third force” which they had no control over. This explanation was viewed with suspicion, as the Zimbabwean president Emmerson Mnangagwa had earlier warned at a public rally that the government would go after “those who chose demonstrations”, adding that “their lives will be shortened.”

Magombeyi, who is leading a strike for living wages, better working conditions and adequate funding for public hospitals, was found alive, outside Harare, after five days and is in hospital being treated for suspected torture. The basic wage for a newly qualified doctor in Zimbabwe is $400 Zimbabwe Dollars (US $27) and the government offer of a 60 per cent increase was rejected.

Police beat up anti-austerity protesters in Harare, Zimbabwe. Photo: Lovejoy Mtongwiza.

IndustriALL Global Union’s Zimbabwe affiliates, who organize in garment and textile, manufacturing, and mining sectors, condemn the government crackdown on unions.

The chairperson of the IndustriALL Zimbabwe affiliates, Joseph Tanyanyiwa said:

“We condemn the ongoing abductions and torture of political activists by suspected state security agents and call upon the government to protect citizens against inhuman and degrading treatment. We also condemn police brutality against peaceful civilians and the involvement of the army in crowd control which has resulted in the deaths of innocent people and injuries to many. We call upon the government to uphold the rule of law and respect constitutional and workers’ rights.”

Paule France Ndessomin, IndustriALL regional secretary for Sub Saharan Africa said:

“We are concerned by the deteriorating situation in Zimbabwe. The Zimbabwean government should respect the rights of workers including to freedom of expression and to fight for living wages. Workers should not be beaten up or face persecution for exercising their rights.”

Header photo: Police beat up anti-austerity protesters in Harare, Zimbabwe: Lovejoy Mtongwiza.

Source

Disclaimer: All third-party opinions expressed via IASWI accounts linked to and from this page are those of the individuals concerned and do not necessarily represent those of IASWI or its affiliates. No copyright infringement is intended nor implied. To discuss this disclaimer or the removal of appropriate credit for materials of which you hold copyright please contact us. All the third party videos and contents found on workers-iran.org is not hosted on our servers; all third party videos or contents are hosted on a third party site. The opinions, beliefs and viewpoints expressed by the various authors and news sources on the www.workers-iran.org do not necessarily reflect the opinions, beliefs and viewpoints of the IASWI or official policies of the IASWI. These posts are only generated for the purpose of information sharing on the labour related issues.

Written by IASWI

Cambodia: Hotel Casino Union President suspended in attack on collective bargaining rights

As McMaster education workers hold strike vote, support pours in from across Province