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Supreme Court Ruling Fails to End Feuding in Zimbabwe's Main Labor Body

The Lovemore Matombo-led faction of the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions, which on Monday lost an appeal against a High Court ruling barring its leaders from representing the organization, says it will continue to use the name ZCTU, regardless.

The Supreme Court ruling barred the faction from representing workers under the unions’ umbrella body.

The Matombo faction sought to nullify the outcome of a congress held in August last year by another group of the ZCTU that is led by George Nkiwane. The case is still pending in the courts.

Monday’s decision was based on an application by the Nkiwane faction seeking to stop the holding of another ZCTU congress by the Matombo faction in December last year.

The high court ruled in Nkiwane’s favor, but the Matombo faction appealed to the supreme court, a case it lost Monday.

Spokesman Raymond Majongwe of the Matombo faction told VOA that the group will not be defying the court ruling by continuing to call themselves ZCTU, adding that is what their membership mandated them to do.

But secretary general Japhet Moyo of the Nkiwane faction, who welcomed the ruling, warned his erstwhile colleagues that the law will catch up with them if they ignore the courts.

Law expert and National Constitutional Assembly chairman Lovemore Madhuku said the Matombo faction should have waited for the outcome of its own court application before claiming legitimacy.

Two factions of the ZCTU emerged after Matombo and his followers declined to recognize Nkiwane's election as the unions' umbrella body. They then formed a splinter group.