News Briefs 3 May 2019

Africa in General

SA Hits Out at UN Security Council Over Western Sahara Resolution

South Africa has chided the United Nations Security Council for passing what it calls an unbalanced resolution on Western Sahara.

With Russia and South Africa abstaining, the 15-nation UN powerhouse resolved to extend the mandate of the UN peacekeeping force in the country occupied by Morocco in defiance of the international community.

Ambassador to the world organisation Jerry Matjila said South Africa had considered voting against the resolution drafted by a handful of European powers and the United States.

EWN

‘Incredibly difficult’ to reach Mozambique cyclone survivors

Torrential rain continued to batter northern Mozambique on Tuesday, several days after Cyclone Kenneth, as the United Nations said aid workers faced “an incredibly difficult situation” in reaching thousands of survivors.

The rains grounded aid operations for a third consecutive day leaving some of the worst-hit communities cut off with very limited supplies.

A planned World Food Programme (WFP) flight to the island of Ibo was on standby until the weather improved, according to Deborah Nguyen, spokeswoman for the agency.

“We are really concerned about the situation for people on Ibo island,” she said, as they had been left out in the open after the majority of homes were destroyed, and with very limited food.

Aljazeera

Algeria’s ruling FLN party elects new leader

Algeria’s ruling National Liberation Front (FLN) party has elected a new leader, according to state media, a month after former President Abdelaziz Bouteflika quit in the face of mass protests over his bid for a fifth term in office.

Mohamed Djemai, a 50-year-old businessman, was named as the new head of the FLN on Tuesday, state television reported.

Djemai is a relatively youthful figure atop the FLN, most of whose senior officials are in their 70s and have dominated Algeria’s politics since independence from France in 1962.

Aljazeera

Uganda police clash with pop star Bobi Wine’s supporters

Ugandan police have fired tear gas and rubber bullets at scores of demonstrators who took to the streets to protest the arrest of pop star-turned-opposition MP Bobi Wine.

Crowds of people held rallies in several suburbs of the capital, Kampala, on Tuesday, a day after the latest arrest of the politician, according to an AFP reporter.

“There are clashes between the police and youths who threw stones at the advancing police, a number of people have been injured and we took some to Mulago hospital,” Kampala Red Cross Manager, Praise Turyebwa told AFP news agency.

Aljazeera

Democratic Republic of Congo

DR Congo scraps sentence against exiled Katumbi

A court in DR Congo has scrapped a three-year jail term against opposition leader Moise Katumbi, enabling him to return home from self-imposed exile in Belgium, his lawyer said on Friday.

The decision by the Court of Cassation — the supreme court of appeal — overturns a sentence for alleged property fraud, “opening the way for his return,” attorney Joseph Mukendi said.

One of the Democratic Republic of Congo’s political heavyweights, Katumbi, 54, left the country in 2016 after falling out with the then president, Joseph Kabila.

eNCA

Opposition Leader Urges People Power to Oust DRC President

Martin Fayulu, who claims he was robbed of victory in the Democratic Republic of Congo’s presidential election, on Sunday called for people power to drive President Felix Tshisekedi from power, an AFP journalist reported.

Citing popular uprisings in Algeria and Sudan, he told a meeting of several thousand supporters in Kinshasa the Congolese could achieve the same thing.

“This time, we have returned to call for and to obtain the resignation of Felix Tshisekedi,” he said. “He’s a disgrace, he sold out the country…

“You, the people are stronger than any army in the world. In Sudan and in Algeria, the people got the departure of the leaders. Here we have to do the same thing against Kabila and Tshisekedi.”

EWN

Somalia

Somalia’s info minister resigns over ‘differences’ with federal govt

Somalia’s Information Minister on May 1 resigned his position in government citing differences with the federal government under President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed Farmaajo.

Harun Maruf, journalist with the Voice of America, VOA Somali Service, said Dahir Mohamoud Gelle confirmed his resignation to the VOA in an exclusive interview.

Gelle was appointed by Prime Minister Ali Hassan Khaire 11 months ago. In Somalia the full portfolio is of Information, Culture and Tourism.

The premier’s office has said it has received and accepted the resignation of Gelle. PM Khaire was appointed by Farmaajo who won elections in early 2017.

Africa News

UN says 1.7 million Somalis will face major food insecurity

The U.N. estimates 1.7 million people in Somalia will “face crisis and emergency levels of food insecurity until June” after a second consecutive bad rainy season caused livestock losses and failed crops.

U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric said Wednesday that this represents a 10% increase in food insecurity.

He says that “malnutrition rates are rapidly escalating due to the drought conditions and 954,000 children are anticipated to be acutely malnourished,” including 174,600 children who are severely malnourished.

Dujarric says the U.N. humanitarian team is preparing a plan to address food gaps between May and October. But he says the current plan seeking $1.08 billion for Somalia is only 19% funded, which has led to the scaling back of water, sanitation and hygiene activities

City News

Central African Republic

Without Justice in the Central African Republic, ‘Everything Else is Wrecked’

“Our brothers, who have attacked us, must be brought to justice,” a victim of the violence in the Central African Republic told me last week in the country’s capital Bangui.

“Justice counteracts this culture of violence… It can change the behavior, not only of criminals, but also of the state,” a human rights defender also told us.

Other victims, activists, and lawyers echoed these sentiments during my week in Bangui, along with deeply held concerns that vague provisions on accountability in the recent peace agreement could be used to sideline the delivery of justice for atrocities committed in the country.

Human Rights Watch

UN tells Central Africa to reintegrate rebels

The UN Security Council told the Central African Republic (CAR) on Tuesday that it must make progress in reintegrating rebels into the security forces as a condition to review an arms embargo.

In a unanimous statement, the council said it would review the ban on arms sales if progress were made in disarming the rebel groups following a peace deal signed in February.

The UN arms embargo was imposed in 2013 when the country descended into bloodletting after President Francois Bozize, a Christian, was overthrown by mainly Muslim Seleka rebels.

Business Day

Sudan

African Union gives Sudan military further 60 days to cede power

The African Union has given Sudan’s military rulers another 60 days to hand over power to a civilian authority or face suspension.

The new threat on Wednesday came after Sudan’s military leaders ignored an earlier deadline to step aside within a 15-day period set by the bloc on April 15.

The AU’s Peace and Security Council said it noted the military’s failure to transfer power to a civilian authority “with deep regret”, but said it was giving the council “an additional period of up to 60 days” to do so.

The bloc also reiterated “its conviction that a military-led transition in the Sudan will be totally unacceptable and contrary to the will and legitimate aspirations, to democratic institutions and processes, as well as respect for human rights and freedoms of the Sudanese people”.

Aljazeera

Don’t Provoke Army, Sudan Opposition Chief Warns Protesters

Sudan’s main opposition chief on Wednesday warned protest leaders against any provocation of the country’s army rulers, saying they will soon hand power to a civilian administration as demanded by demonstrators.

The call by Sadiq al-Mahdi, chief of Sudan’s opposition National Umma Party, comes amid a deadlock in talks between the protest leaders and the 10-member army council on forming a joint civilian-military body to rule the country three weeks after leader Omar al-Bashir was ousted.

“We shouldn’t provoke the army council by trying to deprive them of their legitimacy, deprive them of their positive role in the revolution,” Mahdi, 84, told AFP in an interview at his residence in Omdurman, the twin city of Khartoum across the Nile.

EWN

South Sudan

South Sudan rivals meet in bid to salvage stalled peace deal

South Sudan’s warring parties will hold talks in Addis Ababa on Thursday, in a bid to salvage a stalled peace deal, with just days to go until a unity government is meant to be formed.

President Salva Kiir, rebel leader Riek Machar and a handful of other groups inked the peace deal in September 2018, the latest in a long line of efforts to end a devastating conflict now in its sixth year.

However, the parties have failed to resolve several crucial issues before a power-sharing government is to be installed on May 12, and are at odds over how to proceed.

The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), a regional bloc for East Africa, said in a statement it had called the two-day meeting to “develop a clear roadmap” for the formation of the government, and tackle “pending tasks of the agreement”.

Mail& Guardian

UN Panel: South Sudan Killed Activists

A new U.N. report says South Sudanese security agents likely executed two prominent critics of the government who vanished in Kenya in January 2017.

South Sudan’s government has repeatedly denied responsibility for the disappearance of human rights lawyer Dong Samuel Luak and Aggrey Idri, a member of Sudan People’s Liberation Movement In Opposition (SPLM-IO).

But the U.N. Panel of Experts on South Sudan says it verified evidence strongly suggesting that Luak and Idri were kidnapped in Nairobi by South Sudan’s Internal Security Bureau, acting on orders from ISB’s director general, Lieutenant General Akol Koor Kuc.

Voice of America

Western Sahara

UN Welcomes Momentum on Western Sahara, But Parties at Odds

The U.N. Security Council approved a resolution Tuesday welcoming “new momentum” from the restart of talks on resolving the decades-old dispute over the mineral-rich Western Sahara, but Morocco and the pro-independence Polisario Front remain deeply at odds over its future.

South Africa and Russia abstained in the 13-0 vote, calling the U.S.-drafted resolution unbalanced.

Last year, the council called for accelerated efforts to reach a solution to the more than four-decade dispute over the territory. But two rounds of talks in December and March, brokered by Secretary-General Antonio Guterres’ personal envoy, Horst Kohler, made no headway.

Voice of America

Moroccan Authorities Attack Western Saharan Activists Ahead of U.N. Vote

In Western Sahara, Moroccan authorities have swept out across the city of Laayoune in a bid to crush protests, as activists call for a referendum on the status of the territory and demand the release of political prisoners. Video clandestinely recorded and circulated on social media sites shows activists Mina Bali and Aziza Biza being beaten by plainclothes security officers as they protest peacefully in the streets of Western Sahara’s territorial capital.

Mina Bali suffered broken bones in her hand requiring surgery. Meanwhile, Sultana Khaya, a famed Sahrawi activist who had her eye gouged out by a Moroccan police officer in 2007 during a peaceful protest, was stopped by authorities as she tried to enter Laayoune and was turned around. The latest crackdown on dissent by Morocco comes as the U.N. Security Council is set to vote today on an extension of the U.N.’s mandate in Western Sahara; Morocco is seeking to prevent U.N. peacekeepers there from adding human rights monitoring to their mandate.

Democracy Now

Swaziland

“Unions Have to Look Deeper into the Real Problems Affecting People’s Livelihoods”

The Swaziland National Association of Teachers (SNAT) has led the country’s teachers in their struggles since 1928, when the country was under British rule. Originally, the organization was conceived as the Swazi National Union of Teachers (SNUT). However, in 1973, the then monarch banned all political parties and public meetings that did not have written permission from the commissioner of police. Trade unions, which were regarded as political organizations, came under increasing crackdown.

The organization was ordered to drop the union status, following which SNAT was formed as an ‘association’. Despite arrests, police assaults and other forms of state repression, the association has been at the forefront of the agitations to further the teachers’ interests. Teachers are among the lowest paid civil servants in the country, which is ruled by an absolute monarch who reigns above the law.

On the International Workers’ Day, in order understand the contemporary struggles of this ‘association’ and the challenges it is tackling, Peoples Dispatch interviewed Njabulo Dlamini, one of the branch leaders of SNAT.

News Click

Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe begins exhuming victims of Gukurahundi massacre

A Zimbabwean organisation has started exhuming the remains of victims of a government massacre during former president Robert Mugabe’s rule, which claimed some 20 000 lives.

Mugabe’s regime deployed a North Korean-trained crack military unit to fight alleged dissidents in parts of the Matabeleland and Midlands provinces in the 1980s, according to rights groups.

The targets were mainly from the Ndebele ethnic group, perceived as backing a rival to Mugabe, who is from the majority Shona group.

Mugabe did not publicly apologise for the crackdown code-named ‘Gukurahundi’ (which means “the rain that washes away the chaff” in Shona) except calling the killings “a moment of madness.”

Mail& Guardian

Little to Celebrate for Zimbabwe Workers on Workers’ Day

Unions in Zimbabwe marked May Day bemoaning worsening economic woes plaguing the country including price hikes and massive joblessness which have left workers with little to celebrate.

“This year is another bleak year with absolutely nothing to celebrate for the common worker and the common citizen,” Japhet Moyo, secretary of the country’s main trade union Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) told AFP.

May Day commemorations came just over a week after the price of bread almost doubled in Zimbabwe as runaway inflation which marked the rule of long-time authoritarian leader Robert Mugabe returns to haunt his successor Emmerson Mnangagwa.

“The challenge that we have right now is that we don’t have a stable currency,” said a worker in Harare who only gave his first name as Hilary.

EWN

Africa in General

SA Hits Out at UN Security Council Over Western Sahara Resolution

South Africa has chided the United Nations Security Council for passing what it calls an unbalanced resolution on Western Sahara.

With Russia and South Africa abstaining, the 15-nation UN powerhouse resolved to extend the mandate of the UN peacekeeping force in the country occupied by Morocco in defiance of the international community.

Ambassador to the world organisation Jerry Matjila said South Africa had considered voting against the resolution drafted by a handful of European powers and the United States.

EWN

‘Incredibly difficult’ to reach Mozambique cyclone survivors

Torrential rain continued to batter northern Mozambique on Tuesday, several days after Cyclone Kenneth, as the United Nations said aid workers faced “an incredibly difficult situation” in reaching thousands of survivors.

The rains grounded aid operations for a third consecutive day leaving some of the worst-hit communities cut off with very limited supplies.

A planned World Food Programme (WFP) flight to the island of Ibo was on standby until the weather improved, according to Deborah Nguyen, spokeswoman for the agency.

“We are really concerned about the situation for people on Ibo island,” she said, as they had been left out in the open after the majority of homes were destroyed, and with very limited food.

Aljazeera

Algeria’s ruling FLN party elects new leader

Algeria’s ruling National Liberation Front (FLN) party has elected a new leader, according to state media, a month after former President Abdelaziz Bouteflika quit in the face of mass protests over his bid for a fifth term in office.

Mohamed Djemai, a 50-year-old businessman, was named as the new head of the FLN on Tuesday, state television reported.

Djemai is a relatively youthful figure atop the FLN, most of whose senior officials are in their 70s and have dominated Algeria’s politics since independence from France in 1962.

Aljazeera

Uganda police clash with pop star Bobi Wine’s supporters

Ugandan police have fired tear gas and rubber bullets at scores of demonstrators who took to the streets to protest the arrest of pop star-turned-opposition MP Bobi Wine.

Crowds of people held rallies in several suburbs of the capital, Kampala, on Tuesday, a day after the latest arrest of the politician, according to an AFP reporter.

“There are clashes between the police and youths who threw stones at the advancing police, a number of people have been injured and we took some to Mulago hospital,” Kampala Red Cross Manager, Praise Turyebwa told AFP news agency.

Aljazeera

News Briefs 3 May 2019

Democratic Republic of Congo

DR Congo scraps sentence against exiled Katumbi

A court in DR Congo has scrapped a three-year jail term against opposition leader Moise Katumbi, enabling him to return home from self-imposed exile in Belgium, his lawyer said on Friday.

The decision by the Court of Cassation — the supreme court of appeal — overturns a sentence for alleged property fraud, “opening the way for his return,” attorney Joseph Mukendi said.

One of the Democratic Republic of Congo’s political heavyweights, Katumbi, 54, left the country in 2016 after falling out with the then president, Joseph Kabila.

eNCA

Opposition Leader Urges People Power to Oust DRC President

Martin Fayulu, who claims he was robbed of victory in the Democratic Republic of Congo’s presidential election, on Sunday called for people power to drive President Felix Tshisekedi from power, an AFP journalist reported.

Citing popular uprisings in Algeria and Sudan, he told a meeting of several thousand supporters in Kinshasa the Congolese could achieve the same thing.

“This time, we have returned to call for and to obtain the resignation of Felix Tshisekedi,” he said. “He’s a disgrace, he sold out the country…

“You, the people are stronger than any army in the world. In Sudan and in Algeria, the people got the departure of the leaders. Here we have to do the same thing against Kabila and Tshisekedi.”

EWN

Somalia

Somalia’s info minister resigns over ‘differences’ with federal govt

Somalia’s Information Minister on May 1 resigned his position in government citing differences with the federal government under President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed Farmaajo.

Harun Maruf, journalist with the Voice of America, VOA Somali Service, said Dahir Mohamoud Gelle confirmed his resignation to the VOA in an exclusive interview.

Gelle was appointed by Prime Minister Ali Hassan Khaire 11 months ago. In Somalia the full portfolio is of Information, Culture and Tourism.

The premier’s office has said it has received and accepted the resignation of Gelle. PM Khaire was appointed by Farmaajo who won elections in early 2017.

Africa News

UN says 1.7 million Somalis will face major food insecurity

The U.N. estimates 1.7 million people in Somalia will “face crisis and emergency levels of food insecurity until June” after a second consecutive bad rainy season caused livestock losses and failed crops.

U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric said Wednesday that this represents a 10% increase in food insecurity.

He says that “malnutrition rates are rapidly escalating due to the drought conditions and 954,000 children are anticipated to be acutely malnourished,” including 174,600 children who are severely malnourished.

Dujarric says the U.N. humanitarian team is preparing a plan to address food gaps between May and October. But he says the current plan seeking $1.08 billion for Somalia is only 19% funded, which has led to the scaling back of water, sanitation and hygiene activities

City News

Central African Republic

Without Justice in the Central African Republic, ‘Everything Else is Wrecked’

“Our brothers, who have attacked us, must be brought to justice,” a victim of the violence in the Central African Republic told me last week in the country’s capital Bangui.

“Justice counteracts this culture of violence… It can change the behavior, not only of criminals, but also of the state,” a human rights defender also told us.

Other victims, activists, and lawyers echoed these sentiments during my week in Bangui, along with deeply held concerns that vague provisions on accountability in the recent peace agreement could be used to sideline the delivery of justice for atrocities committed in the country.

Human Rights Watch

UN tells Central Africa to reintegrate rebels

The UN Security Council told the Central African Republic (CAR) on Tuesday that it must make progress in reintegrating rebels into the security forces as a condition to review an arms embargo.

In a unanimous statement, the council said it would review the ban on arms sales if progress were made in disarming the rebel groups following a peace deal signed in February.

The UN arms embargo was imposed in 2013 when the country descended into bloodletting after President Francois Bozize, a Christian, was overthrown by mainly Muslim Seleka rebels.

Business Day

Sudan

African Union gives Sudan military further 60 days to cede power

The African Union has given Sudan’s military rulers another 60 days to hand over power to a civilian authority or face suspension.

The new threat on Wednesday came after Sudan’s military leaders ignored an earlier deadline to step aside within a 15-day period set by the bloc on April 15.

The AU’s Peace and Security Council said it noted the military’s failure to transfer power to a civilian authority “with deep regret”, but said it was giving the council “an additional period of up to 60 days” to do so.

The bloc also reiterated “its conviction that a military-led transition in the Sudan will be totally unacceptable and contrary to the will and legitimate aspirations, to democratic institutions and processes, as well as respect for human rights and freedoms of the Sudanese people”.

Aljazeera

Don’t Provoke Army, Sudan Opposition Chief Warns Protesters

Sudan’s main opposition chief on Wednesday warned protest leaders against any provocation of the country’s army rulers, saying they will soon hand power to a civilian administration as demanded by demonstrators.

The call by Sadiq al-Mahdi, chief of Sudan’s opposition National Umma Party, comes amid a deadlock in talks between the protest leaders and the 10-member army council on forming a joint civilian-military body to rule the country three weeks after leader Omar al-Bashir was ousted.

“We shouldn’t provoke the army council by trying to deprive them of their legitimacy, deprive them of their positive role in the revolution,” Mahdi, 84, told AFP in an interview at his residence in Omdurman, the twin city of Khartoum across the Nile.

EWN

South Sudan

South Sudan rivals meet in bid to salvage stalled peace deal

South Sudan’s warring parties will hold talks in Addis Ababa on Thursday, in a bid to salvage a stalled peace deal, with just days to go until a unity government is meant to be formed.

President Salva Kiir, rebel leader Riek Machar and a handful of other groups inked the peace deal in September 2018, the latest in a long line of efforts to end a devastating conflict now in its sixth year.

However, the parties have failed to resolve several crucial issues before a power-sharing government is to be installed on May 12, and are at odds over how to proceed.

The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), a regional bloc for East Africa, said in a statement it had called the two-day meeting to “develop a clear roadmap” for the formation of the government, and tackle “pending tasks of the agreement”.

Mail& Guardian

UN Panel: South Sudan Killed Activists

A new U.N. report says South Sudanese security agents likely executed two prominent critics of the government who vanished in Kenya in January 2017.

South Sudan’s government has repeatedly denied responsibility for the disappearance of human rights lawyer Dong Samuel Luak and Aggrey Idri, a member of Sudan People’s Liberation Movement In Opposition (SPLM-IO).

But the U.N. Panel of Experts on South Sudan says it verified evidence strongly suggesting that Luak and Idri were kidnapped in Nairobi by South Sudan’s Internal Security Bureau, acting on orders from ISB’s director general, Lieutenant General Akol Koor Kuc.

Voice of America

Western Sahara

UN Welcomes Momentum on Western Sahara, But Parties at Odds

The U.N. Security Council approved a resolution Tuesday welcoming “new momentum” from the restart of talks on resolving the decades-old dispute over the mineral-rich Western Sahara, but Morocco and the pro-independence Polisario Front remain deeply at odds over its future.

South Africa and Russia abstained in the 13-0 vote, calling the U.S.-drafted resolution unbalanced.

Last year, the council called for accelerated efforts to reach a solution to the more than four-decade dispute over the territory. But two rounds of talks in December and March, brokered by Secretary-General Antonio Guterres’ personal envoy, Horst Kohler, made no headway.

Voice of America

Moroccan Authorities Attack Western Saharan Activists Ahead of U.N. Vote

In Western Sahara, Moroccan authorities have swept out across the city of Laayoune in a bid to crush protests, as activists call for a referendum on the status of the territory and demand the release of political prisoners. Video clandestinely recorded and circulated on social media sites shows activists Mina Bali and Aziza Biza being beaten by plainclothes security officers as they protest peacefully in the streets of Western Sahara’s territorial capital.

Mina Bali suffered broken bones in her hand requiring surgery. Meanwhile, Sultana Khaya, a famed Sahrawi activist who had her eye gouged out by a Moroccan police officer in 2007 during a peaceful protest, was stopped by authorities as she tried to enter Laayoune and was turned around. The latest crackdown on dissent by Morocco comes as the U.N. Security Council is set to vote today on an extension of the U.N.’s mandate in Western Sahara; Morocco is seeking to prevent U.N. peacekeepers there from adding human rights monitoring to their mandate.

Democracy Now

Swaziland

“Unions Have to Look Deeper into the Real Problems Affecting People’s Livelihoods”

The Swaziland National Association of Teachers (SNAT) has led the country’s teachers in their struggles since 1928, when the country was under British rule. Originally, the organization was conceived as the Swazi National Union of Teachers (SNUT). However, in 1973, the then monarch banned all political parties and public meetings that did not have written permission from the commissioner of police. Trade unions, which were regarded as political organizations, came under increasing crackdown.

The organization was ordered to drop the union status, following which SNAT was formed as an ‘association’. Despite arrests, police assaults and other forms of state repression, the association has been at the forefront of the agitations to further the teachers’ interests. Teachers are among the lowest paid civil servants in the country, which is ruled by an absolute monarch who reigns above the law.

On the International Workers’ Day, in order understand the contemporary struggles of this ‘association’ and the challenges it is tackling, Peoples Dispatch interviewed Njabulo Dlamini, one of the branch leaders of SNAT.

News Click

Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe begins exhuming victims of Gukurahundi massacre

A Zimbabwean organisation has started exhuming the remains of victims of a government massacre during former president Robert Mugabe’s rule, which claimed some 20 000 lives.

Mugabe’s regime deployed a North Korean-trained crack military unit to fight alleged dissidents in parts of the Matabeleland and Midlands provinces in the 1980s, according to rights groups.

The targets were mainly from the Ndebele ethnic group, perceived as backing a rival to Mugabe, who is from the majority Shona group.

Mugabe did not publicly apologise for the crackdown code-named ‘Gukurahundi’ (which means “the rain that washes away the chaff” in Shona) except calling the killings “a moment of madness.”

Mail& Guardian

Little to Celebrate for Zimbabwe Workers on Workers’ Day

Unions in Zimbabwe marked May Day bemoaning worsening economic woes plaguing the country including price hikes and massive joblessness which have left workers with little to celebrate.

“This year is another bleak year with absolutely nothing to celebrate for the common worker and the common citizen,” Japhet Moyo, secretary of the country’s main trade union Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) told AFP.

May Day commemorations came just over a week after the price of bread almost doubled in Zimbabwe as runaway inflation which marked the rule of long-time authoritarian leader Robert Mugabe returns to haunt his successor Emmerson Mnangagwa.

“The challenge that we have right now is that we don’t have a stable currency,” said a worker in Harare who only gave his first name as Hilary.

EWN