Presentation on theme: "Employment Generation in Zimbabwe:"— Presentation transcript:
1 Employment Generation in Zimbabwe: Current Constraints and Alternative Strategies:In Memory of the late Professor Guy Mhone:IDEAS Young Scholars Conference: January 2007, Nairobi, KenyaTafadzwa Roberta MuropaActionAid International-ZimbabweHIV/AIDS Programme Officer
2 Outline of the presentation IntroductionCurrent constraints in the political-economy of contemporary ZimbabweAlternative strategies- solidarity between the labour movements and the social movements focusing on socio-economic justice
3 IntroductionYoung people have an important role in social and economic development of any society, given the fact that they constitute about 50% of any country’s population.Employment creation in Zimbabwe has to be un understood within the political economic set up of the nation, looking at the period, 1980(Zimbabwe attained its independence from the British colonial rule) to 1990,( with the introduction of ESAP-Economic Structural Adjustment programs which put emphasis on free market at the expense of people’s livelihoods ,up to the present dateThe rise of the informal sector with the young people dominating the scene should as be taken into account, as a result of ESAPDuring this period, one also needs to appreciate the role of labor movement (ZCTU- Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions)) in light of growing opposition politics in Zimbabwe and the role of young workers in labor movements and national politicsChallenges of migration ,unemployment, HIV/AIDS ,lack of participation in decision making processes at all levels should also be analyzed as part of sub regional challenges that the SADC region has to look into.
4 Introduction(continued) Alternatives to unemployment and economic globalization in the region have always been in existence-these include the integration of the informal sector & communal sector into the formal sector- through agrarian reforms ,income generating projects,-(acknowledgement of the works of the Late Professor Guy Mhone, Dr Godfrey Kanyenze of LEDRIZ- Labor and Economic Development Research Institute of Zimbabwe, in collaboration with reputable labor research institutions and labor movements in the region as a whole towards the ANSA project( Alternatives to neo-Liberalism in Southern Africa)At the end of the day, young people need to be included in a decision making processes irrespective of political affiliation by the governmentsYoung women need to claim the space within the labor movements in articulating women's struggles within the fight for labor rights.Policies should also be implemented by the responsible institutionsMentoring of young people in the labor movements by the older generation is very vital in carrying forward the workers’ struggles in the future.
5 Zimbabwe:Zimbabwe inherited an economy that had been built on isolating the formal economy from the informal and communal economy, what G.Mhone calls the ‘enclave’The economy had also been built along racial lines- where the white race were mainly employed in the formal sector and only a few blacks and people of the Asian race were into his sector on the basis of their educational equalizations( UNRSD- G.Mhone Labour migration and race )Relations between the labor movement(ZCTU-Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions) and the government were on a good note as the government’s policies were centers on improving the livelihoods of workers around the country.
6 Zimbabwe:The shift from a socialist economy to a market based economy ( ESAP-IMF & World Bank) saw the gains of independence being reversed as the government adopted these policies in a bid to ‘improve the economy’This was also experienced across the region and other nations in the Global SouthSour relations between the labor movement and the government- many works got retrenched- negative impact on their families, public services being cut off from state education,health,social services,)The impact of HIV/AIDS on workers increased due to a decline in health servicesRise of the informal sector, which saw many women and young men engaged in the cross border trading and other crafts as an alternative source of livelihoodRole of labor movements in the growth of opposition politics as an alternative institution in driving the concerns of workers and poor people in a on party state-National Working People’s Convention( ),food riots( 1998),constitutional referendum( )How political repression had a negative impact on absorbing young people into the formal economy those from tertiary institutions and those who would not have passed well)The land question ,arose during this period, as a way of addressing colonial imbalances and allocating resources equitably among all people, including the young people.
7 Realization of the important role that the informal sector and communal sector play in the national economy by the state..But high rate of unemployment still stands at 80%,coupled with brain drain( young skilled labor ins each of ‘greener pastures' overseas), high death rate attributed to HIV/AIDS, migration (unskilled labor) into the SADC region( replication of labor migration in the pre 1980s to satisfy the needs of ‘capital' down South Africa, declining stands in educational among other factorsCreation of the Ministry of Small to Medium Enterprises by the government-resources could be mobilized on a large scaleImpact of “Operation Restore Order/ ‘Murambatsvina’-on the informal sector ,especially on the youth and women’-displacement and evictions made by the state police in city centers without offering alternative housing and business strucutres-18 May 2005Efforts made by the international community-ILO,in October 2005,- SADC Youth Unemployment Conference, October 2005, in a bid to address the challenges that affect young people in the sub regionPolarization of national politics- young unskilled labor being used in political violence- negatively impacting the development of the national economy.High rate of migration- affecting the formal sector-though within the communal sector- issues of collateral and technical expertise can be an inhibiting factor in owning landLack of meaningful engagement between young people, the government and various stakeholders in addressing the challenges that young people faceLack of policy implementation by the responsible ministries ( Youth and Development, Women's Affairs, Labor and Social Welfare, Small and Medium Enterprises, Higher Education and Education, Sports and Culture)How to curb HIV/AIDS and all forms of violence among young people
8 What are the alternatives? Integration of the informal and communal economy into the formal sector which is shrinking against the informal sector- as a way pf creating meaningful employment among young peopleRegular consultation between young people and various stakeholders-government, the private sector international community,labour movement traditional leaders, among others on addressing challenges that young people are facing and how to tackle them irrespective of political affiliation,race,sex,gender,tribal linesHow to curb migration of young skilled labor and unskilled labor into the region and abroad-intensifying lobbying and advocacy work at SADC platformsPressurizing governments to honor their commitments made at national, regional and international levels- in relation of young people and promoting employment creation-ILO,AU,SADC,ECOWAS,EAC,COMESA,Engagement between social movements and academics in building intellectual skills among young people in addressing their concerns in relation to reviving the national economyBuilding leadership skills among young people in the labor movements through mentoring and encouraging inter generational dialogue in a bid to promote developmentAddressing gender imbalances within the labor movements and encourage young women to be involved in leadership roles in addressing women's struggles in the broader struggles of workers across national, regional and international boundaries,
9 I Thank You ,Ndatenda,Ngiyabonga,Asante Sana!! ConclusionLabor movements should continue to be actively involved in anti-globalization movements at all levels- reflection on the success of the Social Forum process since 2001,Seattle 1999 WTO Ministerial Conferences, World Bank & IMF Boycott Demonstrations, and other human rights demonstrations at international ,regional and national levels)The struggle against the domination of global capital on people's lies can only be won if all forces join in bin unions-(labor movements, young people, academics, like minded social movements, feminist, HIV/AIDS activists, environment activists among others)The late Professor Guy Mhone would have been very proud of how his work has impacted on young women and men across the continent and globally in ensuring that young people's concerns are taken seriously in relation to meaningful employment creationMay his great works continue to inspire young people and those to come to look for alternative strategies in dealing with unemployment in Africa and the rest of the Global South in order to create a better world!!!Another world for young people is possible and is already in the making!!I Thank You ,Ndatenda,Ngiyabonga,Asante Sana!!