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  HOME PAGE 12/08/2022 18:59 
16.09.2021 03:56 News >> Legal Experts Urge Zimbabwe To Soften Its Stance On Unvaccinated Civil Servants

Legal Experts Urge Zimbabwe To Soften Its Stance On Unvaccinated Civil Servants

Government needs to balance rights of workers, contain virus, as it is not by force but persuasion, say rights defenders.

Legal experts in Zimbabwe have urged the government to reconsider its position of forcing its workers to get vaccinated against COVID-19 or stop going to work.
"The step the government is taking of banning its unvaccinated workers from going to work is ill-advised. A blanket barring borders on violation of human rights as the conditions set so far make it impossible for workers to choose," Dzikamai Bere, national director of the Zimbabwe Human Rights Association, told Anadolu Agency.
Bere was reacting to the Cabinet's announcement late Tuesday that unvaccinated civil servants will not be allowed to come to work.
Rumbidzai Venge, a legal expert based in Harare, also urged the government to soften its position, as it left its workers with no choice.
"There must be dialogue between an employer and its workers on the benefits of vaccination, considering that Zimbabwe does not have a definitive COVID-19 law that encompasses what should happen when we have a pandemic," Rumbidzai said.
Nearly two million Zimbabweans have been vaccinated so far, while the government is targeting 60% of its population of over 15 million.
The Zimbabwean government remains the country's biggest employer, with a workforce of more than 300,000, but it remains unclear how many of those workers will be affected.
To date, Zimbabwe has received nearly 12 million vaccine doses through purchases and donations mainly from China.
Meanwhile, the biggest workers union in the country, the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU), sued the state last month for forcing workers to get vaccinated, and only a provisional High Court order nullifying the government's position has been obtained.
The matter is yet to be finalized in the courts. -



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