TNF members deliberate on social contract to move Zim forward

By ZBC Reporter
Members of the Tripartite Negotiating Forum (TNF) are meeting in Kadoma for deliberations on a social contract that should move Zimbabwe forward.
The Tripartite Negotiating Forum (TNF) technical meeting has drawn not only social partners to the table but also experts from outside the TNF and carries the hopes of Zimbabweans in addressing the country’s challenges.
Representatives from government, labour and business concurred on the need to implement agreed decisions, amid concerns unilateral decisions by parties to the social contract have previously led to the collapse of the TNF.
Representing government is the Minister of State for Mashonaland West Provincial Affairs, Mary Mliswa who admitted social dialogue is a major factor in socio-economic development and urged the team in Kadoma to come up with resolutions and recommendations that will have a positive impact.
“This workshop is about reviewing the socio-economic environment and proffering solutions. International best practices show that where the greatest economic progress has been made, social dialogue was a major factor,” said Minister Mliswa.
A representative of the labour movement, Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) Secretary-General, Japhet Moyo expressed hope that the formalisation of the social contract through the promulgation of the Tripartite Negotiating Forum Act will lead to a fair and just social contract.
“The average minimum wage is around 350 dollars against a poverty datum line of 5 000 dollars. It is clear wages are below food secure threshold. It is hoped this formality of the social dialogue will lead to a new social contract that is fair and just to all stakeholders,” said Moyo.
For businesses, the main concern is for the TNF to come up with proposals that will address monetary issues, especially relating to access to forex with which to procure imported raw materials for industry.
Employers Confederation of Zimbabwe Executive Director, Nester Mukwehwa said measures should be taken to address inflation and the erosion of wages.
“We are of the view that the economic cluster (of the TNF) has a lot on its hands. It should come up with detailed proposals on how the TNF can address monetary issues. We need to come up with measures on how to contain inflation and address erosion of wages,” Mrs. Mukwehwa said.
The TNF technical committee meeting is expected to break into three clusters, namely: economic, social and labour, these will deliberate on issues relating to each sector before presenting them to the main TNF for consideration.