Workers demand reinstatement, compensation

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AT least 23 companies are under siege from workers they dismissed using the July 17 Supreme Court ruling who have picketed their former workplaces demanding to be either reinstated or compensated as employers this week presented heads of argument at the High Court to appeal against several clauses of the amended Labour Act, businessdigest has learnt.

Kudzai Kuwaza

The Employers’ Confederation of Zimbabwe (Emcoz) has rallied against the Labour Amendment Act blasting government for lack of “thinking” in the manner the law was crafted to counter the July 17 Supreme Court ruling, which left thousands of workers jobless.

In its application filed at the High Court in September, the employers’ representative said there were many areas in the Labour Amendment Act, passed by Parliament in August, that need to be revisited by the courts, taking into account the country’s Constitution.

“We have presented heads of argument this week and we now await a date for the case to be heard,” Emcoz executive director John Mufukare told businessdigest on Tuesday. As a result of the amendments, which compel employers to compensate workers dismissed using the July 17 ruling, he said 23 companies have told the confederation that workers have besieged their premises demanding either to be reinstated or compensated.

Mufukare said it was such developments that made it necessary for employers to appeal against the amended piece of legislation. Mufukare said the demands by workers to be reinstated or compensated are subjudice as the employer’s appeal against the amendments is yet to be heard.

The Emcoz boss said the employer body this week received a draft of the Tripartite Negotiating Forum bill so as to get their input to the document.

“The document is summing up what we agreed upon. So we will meet and we should give the ministry our input on Friday (today),” Mufukare said.

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