Gweru ignores lawyers’ advice

Gweru mayor Hamutendi Kombayi

GWERU City Council has ignored advice from lawyers that it should recognise a newly-elected workers’ committee, in a move that has divided the MDC-T-led local authority.


The new workers’ committee was elected after leaders from rival unions passed a vote of no confidence on the Zimbabwe Urban Council Workers’ Union Gweru branch executive on January 13.

Workers accused the ousted executive of failing to represent their interests and last month a new committee was elected.

However, council refused to recognise the new committee despite advice from lawyers Danziger and Partners not to interfere in the dispute between rival workers’ committees.

Lawyers advised council to recognise the new committee, but the local authority did otherwise, a council document has revealed.

“Council is not in agreement with Messrs Danziger and Partners’ opinion for council to recognise the newly-elected workers’ committee, it being noted that council will only recognise an elected workers’ committee after the dispute between the newly-elected workers’ committee and the various workers’ groups has been resolved by relevant authorities,” a council resolution dated March 2 reads.

“Council shall not entertain any of the workers’ groups until the dispute between the various groups has been resolved by relevant authorities.”

The stance has divided councillors, with some calling for the recognition of the new body.

But mayor Hamutendi Kombayi yesterday said councillors had no business dabbling in the affairs of workers’ unions.