'Social ills spike in Hwange'

HARARE - Social ills — prostitution, poaching and theft — have spiked in the Hwange mining town, as unpaid Hwange Colliery Company (HCC) workers increasingly get hard-pressed, a Zimbabwe Peace Project (ZPP) report said.

This comes as the town’s economy is largely driven by the coal miner and its workers activities.

But HCC is reeling due to crippling debts to the tune of $300 million-plus, among other challenges, and has failed to pay workers for months.

“HCC workers have now gone for three years without pay,” ZPP said in their monthly monitoring report for July.

“Social ills like prostitution, poaching and theft are on the rise as a result of increasing poverty,” it said.

While the miner is on its knees, workers have continued to perform their duties without receiving salaries, but they are failing to send their children to school, the report said.

The civic organisation, which monitors and documents incidents of human rights violations, added that Matabeleland North was recording increased school drop outs due to grinding poverty.

“Villagers recorded poor harvests. In Binga North, several children, especially girls, were reportedly dropping out of school due to hunger and poverty. Many schools were affected with the worst being Siansundu and Siachilaba schools,” it said.

A Hwange employee who requested anonymity confirmed the findings of the report.

“It has actually been four years without being paid. The biggest problem facing the company is tribalism. If you are not Nambya then you are an outcast.

“To top it all, we don’t have anyone to turn to. The leaders are not only Hwange former employees but they are being pumped with fuel and the company if is building a house so how can they stand for the people. We are really in trouble.”

Comments (4)

How can anyone go to work for 3 years without pay? Am I missing something here? Did they save that much money?

mukwerekwere - 12 September 2016

How can someone go to work for 3 years without being paid.How are they getting food and other necessities.I don't believe this.This needs a quick intervension by the ministry please.

Vashet - 12 September 2016

36 months no pay,??? And still going to work daily???? I would like a double dose of whatever they are taking¡!!!!!!!

lova - 13 September 2016

No doubt they are reporting for work to "help" themselves!!And who can blame them. Mbudzi inofura payakasungirirwa.

Johno - 14 September 2016

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