Zimbabwe High Court Justice Susan Mavhangira on Friday threw out an application by the Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe, among others, seeking to bar a Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions gathering set to open that day in Bulawayo.
The PTUZ and seven other unions charged that outgoing ZCTU Secretary General Wellington Chibebe had nominated individuals with no affiliation to the trade union confederation to vote at the congress, among other alleged abuses.
Mavhanghira said the application was not urgent, leading out-going ZCTU President Lovemore Matombo, allied with the PTUZ, to circulate memos seeking to call a halt to the congress. But the ZCTU general council said he had no power to cancel it.
ZCTU sources said two factions are battling to control the confederation, one behind Matombo, the other backing First Vice President Lucia Matibenga.
The pro-Matombo faction is headed by PTUZ General Secretary Raymond Majongwe; the other is aligned with outgoing ZCTU Secretary General Chibebe.
Majongwe told VOA Studio 7 reporter Sandra Nyaira that the court decision did not end his group’s bid to win control of the confederation.
Chibebe said the pro-Matombo faction has lost its way, adding that his group is proceeding with the congress and making resolutions to help workers.
Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, a former ZCTU secretary general, told the congress that the country needs a strong and united labor movement. Labour Minister Paurina Gwanyanya-Mpariwa encouraged workers to stand up for their rights.