Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe faces blackout

2012-07-10 14:06
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Cape Town - Zimbabwe could be plunged into darkness if workers in the country’s energy sector carry out their threat of a nationwide strike and switch off power over a salary dispute, Newsday reported on Tuesday.

The Zimbabwe Energy Workers’ Union (Zewu) on Monday issued a 72-hour ultimatum to Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority (Zesa) Holdings and other private players to effect a salary award granted to the employees in June.

According to the report, Zesa is already battling to meet the country’s electricity demands, resulting in serious power load-shedding that has seriously affected the economy.

Zewu president Angeline Chitambo told journalists in the capital that they had resolved to embark on the strike after Zesa chief executive Josh Chifamba reneged on implementing the new salary structure awarded to the energy sector by arbitrators on 18 June.

“We have given Chifamba 72 hours to respond to our management in a meaningful engagement and people should not be surprised if they wake up without electricity,” Chitambo said.

“We have written so many letters and I don’t think this blackout is going to be news to Chifamba. It will only be news to him if he takes us for granted.”

Zesa spokesperson Fullard Gwasira has since sought to downplay the blackout threat, saying there were mechanisms in place to secure power supply services in the country.

- News24

Read more on:    zimbabwe  |  southern africa
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