Zimbabwe trade unions condemn Mugabe re-election
Date of publication: July 16, 2008
Zimbabwe's largest trade union federation on Wednesday condemned President Robert Mugabe's re-election and called on the African Union to appoint a high-profile envoy to help mediate talks with the opposition.
Mugabe won a landslide victory last month in a vote that was boycotted by opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai and denounced by Western nations as violent and unfree. Tsvangirai's Movement for Democratic Change has refused to recognise the result.
"The 27 July, 2008 elections were not free and fair and did not represent the will of the people of Zimbabwe," the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) said in a press release.
The ZCTU, an ally of Tsvangirai's MDC, said mediation of preliminary talks between the MDC and Mugabe's ruling ZANU-PF should be expanded beyond South African President Thabo Mbeki, who is overseeing the negotiations.
The federation suggested that a retired African president should enter the process as a full-time mediator.
The ZCTU has in the past staged nationwide strikes and job walkouts to protest the government's policies. But Wednesday's statement made no mention of industrial action.