ZCTU dumps negotiations

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THE Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) has said it cannot continue with dialogue because Tripartite Negotiating Forum (TNF) meetings are not yielding anything, the Daily News can report.

ZCTU president Peter Mutasa yesterday said they are now ready to confront the relevant authorities through protests.

“We have closed the chapter of negotiations. We have exhausted negotiation channels, we told government that we are mobilising our members for action.

“During the TNF meetings, we had challenges with business; they are saying they can’t give salaries which are pegged to the interbank rate. We appreciate the stance that has been taken by government who agree that there should be minimum wages which will take into account the erosion of wages.

“There is need for workers to protect their wages through action. Businesses are increasing prices, but they don’t want salaries to increase and we also need currency reforms,” said Mutasa.

This comes after the TNF meeting on Monday over salaries and wages was deadlocked again.
The TNF is chaired by the minister responsible for labour. Business and labour provide co-chairpersons. The TNF consults and negotiates over social and economic issues and submits recommendations to Cabinet.

After that, it makes follow-ups and monitors the implementation of agreements and generates and promotes a shared national socio-economic vision.

The TNF has seven government members appointed by the president and seven each from labour and business. There are also two observers from the Consumer Council of Zimbabwe and the National Economic Consultative Forum.

The idea to have a TNF meeting came a few days after workers threatened to roll out mass protests against the deteriorating economic situation in the country, which has hit them hard.

Mutasa recently told the Daily News that workers cannot remain silent while the government is failing to dress their plight.

“This year, workers across sectors are going to down tools. Workers are going to engage in various sustained peaceful protests. Only fools will begrudge workers for resisting slavery and economic dictatorship,” he said.

Last year in January, ZCTU called for a crippling stayaway that saw over a dozen civilians losing their lives at the hands of the security forces.

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