Latest News Editor's Choice

Opinion / Columnist

Call for mine workers to register and vote opposition into power - last resort

10 Apr 2022 at 19:42hrs | Views
HARARE - As the momentum for the electoral cycle nears 2023 Presidential, Parliamentary and Local Government General Elections, workers and their dependants have been urged to register to vote as Union puts hope for economic relief of all mine workers in Zimbabwe in the wise casting of their vote.

"This Government does not see us as human because as miners and our dependants, we're apathetic as far as involvement in general elections is concerned and that makes it hardly possible for us to effectively push for better working conditions for ourselves and my position as President of NMWUZ is for all mine workers to vote for President Nelson Chamisa and his ruling opposition CCC - Citizen Coalition for Change as last resort in our quest to deliver a living wage adjustment for all mine workers, a plea which the present Government has repeatedly refused to honor," said Kurebwa Javangwe Nomboka, the President of the NMWUZ - Mine Workers Union of Zimbabwe.

Government has since availed US$98 million to the Zimstat - Zimbabwe National Statistics Agency for the 2022 population and housing census slated for April 21 this year.

However, NMWUZ has emphasised the need not to politicise the census results and called on nuetrality in the delimitation of constituencies so that demacations do not disadvantage one side while making the other a frog-leap ahead.

Nomboka added, "We're worried that the 2022 census might be hi-jacked by manipulative elements, as media reports have been circulating that Zimstat is under siege from Zanu PF officials who are politicising the recruitment of youth enumerators for the upcoming census".

Following a recent cabinet resolution to reserve a youth quota in the employment of census enumerators, Zanu PF youth league officials have annointed themselves recruiting officers, thereby overriding government employment protocols.

Meanwhile Minister of Finance Mr Mthuli Ncube has since introduced the new one hundred dollar note. The move has left many citizens bamboozled as to what value the raising of inflation will give to our already crippled economy.
"We do not understand what value the raising of our local economy will do with the coming of the new one hundred dollar note".

Apparently, Government of Zimbabwe through the Finance ministry has recently hiked interest rate on all rtgs$ bank loans.

"The move by Government to increase interest rate of rtgs$ is severe blow to mine workers who are servicing their bank loans while their income has remained stagnant with insignificantly low salary adjustments".

Ironically, the new hundred dollar note cannot buy a cob of roasted mealies. On a space of sixty days prices of basic commodities and public transport, including fuel have been increased by approximately three hundred percent.
The extractives sector is the biggest foreign currency earner in Zimbabwe yet mind workers are the poorest.

It is progressive that for serious economic recovery to take place in Zimbabwe, Government must take seriously the welfare of mine workers.

The 2016 USAID Strategic Economic Research and Analysis - Zimbabwe (SERA) Program on Wage Structure and Labour Costs in Zimbabwe: Analysis of Flexibility, Competitiveness and Equity noted that the recovery of the economy of Zimbabwe will been underpinned by the primary and resource sectors (agriculture and mining) and that the contribution of the mining sector to GDP rose from 8.1 per cent in 2009 to 10.4 per cent in 2013 and 15.2 percent in 2014 while the contribution of the agriculture sector declined from 15.1 per cent in 009 to 12.8 per cent in 2013 before improving to 14.8 per cent in 2014.

"The cost of living for mine workers is way down below the PDL - Poverty Datum Line and no wage package consistent with a dignified and decent lifestyle has been brought forth".

The NMWUZ President has since called for immediate dialogue with Government (Finance ministry and the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Governor) to find the best way forward in recapacitating mine workers who are living in squalid conditions and starving in the midst of plenty. The areas to be dialogued include the need to scrap off import duty on vehicles and equipment, reducing interest rates on mortgages and special rtgs$ bank loans.

Source - Maxwell Teedzai
All articles and letters published on Bulawayo24 have been independently written by members of Bulawayo24's community. The views of users published on Bulawayo24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Bulawayo24. Bulawayo24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.
More on: #NMWUZ, #Zanu_PF, #CCC