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Cablegate: Zctu Remains Noncommittal On Future Mass Action

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS HARARE 000888

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE

STATE FOR AF/S, DRL
NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR JFRAZER

E. O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ECON ELAB PGOV ZI
SUBJECT: ZCTU REMAINS NONCOMMITTAL ON FUTURE MASS ACTION

SENSITIVE BUT UNCLASSIFIED. NOT FOR INTERNET POSTING.

1. (SBU) Summary. Discussions with the Zimbabwe Congress of
Trade Unions' (ZCTU's) chief economist indicate that while
the organization is willing to publicly flex its muscles, it
continues to be noncommittal about supporting politically-
driven calls for mass action. End summary.

2. (SBU) The ZCTU continues to see its path as separate
from and complementary to, rather than congruous with, that
of the opposition party Movement for Democratic Change
(MDC). Although the ZCTU made strong statements at its May
Day celebrations that it would address political issues when
they affect its membership, the ZCTU's primary thrust
continues to address economic and workplace issues.
Nevertheless, labor contacts hint that there would be tacit
support -- if not outright mobilization -- in response to an
expected MDC call for mass action in the next few weeks.

3. (SBU) Comment: Labor sources continue to express an
awareness of their own role as distinct from the role of
opposition leaders. Although they are proud to be the
source of the opposition party, they do not feel obligated
to march in lock-step. We strongly suspect -- due to the
large crossover in membership -- that many individual ZCTU
members will heed an MDC call for mass action. However, the
ZCTU as an organization remains bound by the concepts of
consultation and consensus, which (notwithstanding the most
recent mass action) often prevent swift mobilization. End
comment.

Sullivan

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