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Dejected Zimbabweans Commit Suicide as Massive Job Cuts Continue

  • Michael Kariati

FILE: Most of these people have turned to vending due to lack of jobs in Zimbabwe.

FILE: Most of these people have turned to vending due to lack of jobs in Zimbabwe.

Massive job cuts that have seen more than 30,000 people losing their jobs in the past month have had a terrible effect on family life in Zimbabwe.

Most of those who were offloaded are stuck between a rock and a hard surface as they do not have anywhere to start from with zero employment opportunities as investors continue to shun Zimbabwe.

A breakdown of marriages has been reported as most families struggle to make ends meet.

Some men have admitted they have not yet told their wives of their misfortune and have been struggling to find ways to convey the sad news.

Others have taken their own lives while some have been admitted in hospitals on grounds of mental instability or high blood pressure.

Alexander Muza speaks of a sad episode in which one of his neighbours committed suicide after losing his job.

Another local person, Naboth Magoche, says he thought of killing himself after losing his job but realized that this was not the solution.

The secretary general of the National Education Union of Zimbabwe, Mathias Guchutu, says even Zimbabweans, who are gainfully employed, are struggling to make ends meet with their meagre earnings.


To make matters worse, he adds that almost all workers who have been laid off were given very little or nothing to even start income generating projects.

With schools only a week away from opening for the third and final term of the year, many are grappling with the shattering reality that there is no money to pay for fees and nowhere else to turn to and get it.

Some had their children at expensive private schools. Morgan Mushipe says he's is wondering where he will get the $480 needed each for his twin children as his company used to pay his fees.

He received a one month's salary of $900 which he says should cover his expenses at home until he finds a new gig, a highly unlikely thing in the current socio-economic environment.

Mushipe says sadly he cannot enter into any school fees arrangement his twin children attend as there is no guarantee that he will be paid outstanding allowances after leaving his place of employment.

Even the loan sharks are skeptical of lending such people money as they can't guarantee the money and interest would be returned.


Loan shark, Mathew Muzamhindo, says he's only prepared to lend money to those who are gainfully employed.

This is the situation in which most Zimbabweans find themselves in as they cannot plan for their future after losing their jobs.

Over 30,000 people lost their jobs as struggling employers took advantage of the country's labor law which allowed them to sack employees on a three-month salary with no benefits for years served.

Ironically, the law has been in existence since 1975 and no effort was made to change it to give equal voice to both employers and employees.

Although the law has since been modified, those who have already lost their jobs may not benefit from the changes that have been made.