Government cannot be more empathetic to the cause of workers than employers, as the latter strive for a win-win situation with employees, Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries president, Busisa Moyo has said.
by Stephen Chadenga
Moyo said the Ministry of Labour had a tendency of crafting laws that purported to protect workers, yet at times, they worsened the business environment, which had ripple effects on employment and general working conditions of workers.
“There is a misconception by the Ministry of Labour that they are the ones who love workers most,” he said at a CZI round table business meeting in Gweru on Wednesday.
“Government cannot love workers more than us employees, we live with the people who work for us, when they get sick we see to it that they are attended to and we worry wether they have food.”
Moyo said employers, through the Employers’ Confederation of Zimbabwe (Emcoz), recently filed an application at the High Court challenging amendments in the Labour Amendment Act because of grey areas in the legislation that worsened the economic and business environment.
He said employers were in business because of people they employ, hence, there was no way they can strive to make workers suffer.
In its application, Emcoz argued that the Labour Amendment Act would stifle economic growth, worsen the business environment and could cause massive unemployment, yet government thought the move was to protect employees.
Turning to the July 17 Supreme Court ruling, which led to thousands of job losses on three months’ notice, Moyo said though CZI had not done research on its impact, it was natural that leaner companies performed better.
“Even if you look at the National Railways of Zimbabwe, for example, government laid off in excess of 1 500 workers, so we are in agreement that we had a bloated workforce which was not necessarily needed,” he said.
Moyo said no investor was willing to put money where companies had salary backlogs running into millions of dollars.