Cablegate: New Charges of Labor Harassment
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
UNCLAS HARARE 000578
STATE FOR AF/S
NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR JFRAZER
USDOC FOR AMANDA HILLIGAS
PASS USTR FLORIZELLE LISER
STATE PASS USAID FOR MARJORIE COPSON
E. O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ELAB PHUM ETRD ECON EINV PGOV ZI ZCTU
SUBJECT: New Charges of Labor Harassment
1. (SBU) Summary: The Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions
(ZCTU) alleges pro-Government groups are stepping up
repression of labor leaders. End summary.
2. (SBU) ZCTU cited two recent cases in press statements:
- On March 25, an unnamed caller invited Progressive
Teachers Union Secretary General Raymond Majongwe to pick
up documents in a Harare suburb. Fearing a set-up,
Majongwe sent his driver instead. A second car trailed
Majongwe's for some time and finally tried to ram the
vehicle on the driver's side. The ZCTU alleges the
second car's occupants later observed Majongwe was not
the driver and sped away.
- On March 27, fifty youths invaded the residence of
Zimbabwe Construction and Allied Workers Union Secretary
General Charles Gumbo. After learning that Gumbo was not
home, they ransacked the residence. The gang held
Gumbo's wife and three children hostage for a time.
Although the gang stole several belongings - cell phone,
car radio, etc - and did not raise Gumbo's union
affiliation, ZCTU officials believe it was not a
burglary. In any event, the large number of invaders is
unusual for a routine break-in.
3. (SBU) Comment: Evidence linking authorities to the
attacks is sketchy and inconclusive. Since both involved
secretaries general and happened within a two-day span,
however, Zimbabwean labor leaders are now observing more
precautions than usual. We will follow and report on