Demand reinstatement of Chitambo, others
The Zimbabwe Energy Workers Union (ZEWU) has been urged to be vigilant and demand that President Angeline Chitambo, national executive member Dennis Mukote and a ZEDTC worker be reinstated back to their respective workplaces with immediate effect.
Adressing a ZEWU strategic planning workshop in Nyanga last Thursday, Herman Ntlatleng IndustriALL executive member,said the union must not fold its hands until justice prevails.
Chitambo was unfairly dismissed from work after being accused of addressing a press conference last July, allegedly urging ZESA workers to embark on industrial action, following a salary dispute with the employer.
Mukote was also suspended on the same charge.
“Last year we got information that over 135 employees were suspended from their workplaces following a salary dispute with ZESA.We were also informed that almost all the workers, save for President Chitambo and two others, were later on reinstated,”said Ntlatleng.
“When we got that information, as an office, we handed the matter to all unions worldwide, our global union, IndustriALL later issued a strong statement, castigating ZESA and launched a campaign against it.
We did not stop there…there were marches and picketing at Zimbabwean Embassy in South Africa and Switerzland.Several affiliates from DRC and Zambia among other countries wrote solidarity letters to ZESA chief executive officer Josh Chifamba and to the Minister of Energy and Power Development, Elton Mangoma.
“The onus is now on you to demand that the affected workers are back at work.If you keep quite and don’t fight those issues, you are doing a disservice as a union.
You must not fold hands, pretending that all is well….if you keep quite, you will be helping the employer,”he said.
Ntlatleng noted with concern that the campaign for reinstatements of dismissed comrades had watered down as ZEWU was not being a player.
“We have noted that the reinstatements campaign have died down….if you pursue the idea again, I will go and inform our unions about your plans.ZEWU is the most strategic labour union in the country for it controls the power, oil and water sectors….you must be the most vocal union and you must make make noise until Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai begs to negotiate with you,”he said.