Zimbabwe’s government will hold last-ditch negotiations with public sector unions today to try to avert a national strike that could trigger more unrest after this month’s violent protests.
But the main teachers’ union said it is not expecting any progress and is already making plans for a February fifth walkout. The president’s spokesman said troops would stay on the streets and the state would block the internet again if violence erupted.
Teachers and other state workers are demanding wage rises and payments in dollars to help them stave off spiraling inflation and an economic crisis that has sapped supplies of cash, fuel and medicines.
Rights groups say at least 12 people were killed this month after a three-day stay-at-home strike over a fuel price hike led to street protests and a crackdown by security services. The government says three people died.