UNI Africa Regional Secretary Keith Jacobs condemned the fierce violence in Zimbabwe and called for the immediate release of ZCTU General Secretary Japhet Moyo. The situation in Zimbabwe is tense after the Zimbabwe security authorities responded to a three day peaceful work stoppage with excessive force and brutality. Protesters were voicing their concerns about rising costs of living in the country after a unilaterally imposed hike in fuel prices by President Mnangagwa’s government.
“Japhet Moyo is no terrorist,” said UNI Africa Regional Secretary Keith Jacobs. “All that Japhet wants is economic prosperity and stability for the people and workers of Zimbabwe. We are calling on the Zimbabwe government to unconditionally release Japhet Moyo now.”
“We are outraged by this brutal crackdown by the government of Zimbabwe on its own people. When a government turns the security apparatus and guns on their own citizens, they no longer deserve power,” said Jacobs. “The situation in Zimbabwe is dire – trade union leaders are being arrested on trumped up charges or in hiding, and ordinary civilians are being attacked.”
“We will not stand by in silence whilst this violence continues and we offer our full solidarity and support to our Zimbabwean brothers and sisters.”
ZCTU reports an escalation of violence as well as the use of live ammunition, killing at least twelve protesters. There have been widespread reports of over 70 protesters sustaining gunshot wounds while taking part in the ongoing nationwide protests as well as a complete shutdown of the internet. The Zimbabwe High Court has since issued an order to the government to restore the internet in full, judging that the security minister did not have the authority to issue this directive. The government violence is the latest in a series of attacks on workers’ rights.
UNI joins the ITUC and international labour movement in calls for an immediate end to violence and stands in full solidarity with workers in Zimbabwe and their demands to:
- end the economic crisis and hardships;
- reverse the fuel price increase;
Please find attached below a model letter to demand Japhet Moyo’s immediate release.