Parly must address farmworkers' concerns

HARARE - Zimbabwe's new Parliament should address issues to do with farm workers that are living and working under extremely poor conditions, the General Agricultural and Plantation Workers’ Union (Gapwuz) has said.

Gift Muti, Gapwuz secretary-general said the new parliament’s Agriculture portfolio committee should discuss and find solutions to farmworkers’ challenges.

“The farm workers are surviving under difficult conditions that need to be urgently addressed,” Muti said.

“The parliamentary portfolio committee should discuss about workers’ welfare not only about implements.”

Farm workers are working unbearably long hours with pathetic pay, he said.

“Workers are supposed to work eight and a half hours a day but they work all day long as long as the sun would be shining. They are paid little amounts such as $70 for a permanent employee,” Muti said.

Muti said the health system in farming areas is in a sorry state as there is no infrastructure to talk about and in some areas it is seriously run down.

Gapwuz has roughly 250 000 members on the farms. Muti said the road network is very poor in farming areas needing urgent attention.

He said he wished this could be discussed in Parliament to bring the legislature to deal with farmworkers’ welfare.

The education system, once vibrant in farming areas, has collapsed, with no sound education in most areas.
Parliamentarians  were sworn-in yesterday.


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