A ZESA Rutenga worker, Sifelani Chambevho, died yesterday in yet another tragedy that grossly portrays ZESA management’s carelessness when it comes to workers’ health and safety.
The truck they were in gave way to cattle that were crossing the highway when all of a sudden, a haulage truck going to the opposite direction, hit some cattle, encroached into a wrong lane and crushed into the CMED truck.
While some ZESA workers escaped with minor injuries, Chambevho who was sitting in front of the truck was not so lucky as the accident left him in a critical condition.
He was ferried to Neshuro hospital, then to Masvingo provincial hospital before being transferred to West End hospital in Harare, where he passed away on 7July 2013.
Commenting on this sad accident, President Chitambo said it was regrettable that ZESA continues to ignore safety of workers.
“It is sad that ZESA continues to hire vehicles during workers’ shifts….thats gross negligence.On top of that we don’t know whether drivers who will be driving these hired trucks would be qualified to drive.ZESA had stopped hiring lorries, but its shocking that this has suddenly become a norm.We will take ZESA head on if they do not stop this practice forthwith,”said Chitambo.
Trustee, Peter Shotere, said it was sad to note that of all the regions in the country, ZESA Eastern Region was the most affected as hired trucks were still being used.
“The accident is unfortunate….we have for a long time talked to ZESA to stop using hired trucks but they have proved to be arrogant.
Its sad that the Eastern Region is the only region that is still using hired trucks.We are saddened by the loss and may we convey our condolences to the affected families.
“May we clearly spell out to ZESA that hired vehicles are doing more harm than good….this must stop forthwith,”said Shotere.
Acting General Secretary Mbonisi Sibanda concurred:
“There is need to separate tools from workers.ZESA must find a appropriate vehicles to ferry workers to and from their working sites rather than embark on cost cutting measures that are detrimental to workers’ safety.”
Chambevho who joined ZESA in 2008, leaves behind two children and will be laid to rest in his Shurugwi rural home.
On 8 JulyThe Union presented $100 as chema to Lowveld branch chairperson Wonderful Mapato who will be representing ZEWU at Chambevho’s burial.