US embassy cable - 00HARARE3348

CHILD LABOR IN ZIMBABWE

Identifier: 00HARARE3348
Wikileaks: View 00HARARE3348 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Harare
Created: 2000-06-21 09:20:00
Classification: UNCLASSIFIED
Tags: ELAB EIND ETRD PHUM SOCI ZI
Redacted: This cable was not redacted by Wikileaks.
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.



                           UNCLASSIFIED     PTQ2804

PAGE 01        HARARE  03348  01 OF 02  210915Z 
ACTION AF-00    

INFO  LOG-00   AID-00   CEA-01   CIAE-00  SMEC-00  COME-00  CTME-00  
      INL-01   DODE-00  ITCE-00  WHA-00   SRPP-00  EAP-00   EB-00    
      ED-01    EXME-00  EUR-00   E-00     UTED-00  VC-00    FRB-00   
      HHS-01   H-01     SSA-01   TEDE-00  INR-00   IO-00    ITC-01   
      LAB-01   L-00     AC-01    NEA-00   NSAE-00  NSCE-00  OES-01   
      OIC-02   OMB-01   OPIC-01  PRS-00   ACE-00   P-00     SP-00    
      SSO-00   SS-00    STR-00   TRSE-00  USIE-00  SA-00    PRM-01   
      DRL-02   G-00     SAS-00     /017W
                  ------------------6534B0  210916Z /38    
FM AMEMBASSY HARARE
TO SECSTATE WASHDC 6357
DEPT OF LABOR WASHDC
INFO CHILD LABOR COLLECTIVE
USMISSION GENEVA 
UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 HARARE 003348 
 
SIPDIS 
 
AF/EPS FOR TONY HOLMES 
 
EB/TPP/BTA FOR VLAD SAMBAIEW 
 
DRL/IL FOR CHRIS CAMILLO 
 
DOL/ILAB FOR MAUREEN JAFFE AND MARCIA EUGENIO 
 
GENEVA FOR USTR 
                       UNCLASSIFIED 
 
PAGE 02        HARARE  03348  01 OF 02  210915Z 
 
DEPT PASS USTR FOR OAA AND TD 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: ELAB, EIND, ETRD, PHUM, SOCI, ZI 
SUBJECT: CHILD LABOR IN ZIMBABWE 
 
REF: (A) STATE 117330 
(B) STATE 100081 
(C) 99 HARARE 06372 
(D) 99 HARARE 06786 
 
1. (U) REFTELS (A) AND (B) REQUESTED POST'S RESPONSE TO 
QUESTIONS PERTAINING TO CHILD LABOR PRACTICES IN 
ZIMBABWE. THIS CABLE, IN CONJUNCTION WITH REFTELS (C) 
AND (D) FROM OCTOBER AND NOVEMBER 1999, DISCUSSES 
ZIMBABWEAN CHILD LABOR PRACTICES IN DETAIL AND PROVIDE 
ANSWERS TO DEPARTMENT'S QUESTIONS. REFTELS (C) AND (D) 
PRESENTED EVIDENCE IN FAVOR OF REMOVING ZIMBABWE FROM 
THE DEPARTMENT'S LIST OF COUNTRIES THAT PRODUCE GOODS 
THROUGH FORCED CHILD LABOR. THE FACTS AND ARGUMENTS 
PRESENTED IN THOSE MESSAGES REMAIN VALID TODAY, I.E., 
CHILD LABOR IS VERY COMMON IN ZIMBABWE (PARTICULARLY IN 
THE COMMUNAL AND COMMERCIAL FARMING SECTORS), BUT 
"FORCED CHILD LABOR" AND "WORST FORMS OF CHILD LABOR" AS 
DEFINED BY THE ILO ARE NOT COMMON OCCURRENCES. 
 
2. (U) TO RESPOND TO THE REMAINDER OF DEPARTMENT'S 
QUESTIONS IN REFTELS (A) AND (B), ZIMBABWE IS A 
SIGNATORY TO BOTH THE ILO'S INTERNATIONAL PROGRAM ON THE 
ELIMINATION OF CHILD LABOR (IPEC), AND ILO CONVENTION 
                       UNCLASSIFIED 
 
PAGE 03        HARARE  03348  01 OF 02  210915Z 
182 ON THE WORST FORMS OF CHILD LABOR. TWO PIECES OF 
ZIMBABWEAN LEGISLATION PROHIBIT CHILD LABOR: (1) THE 
LABOR RELATIONS ACT (LRA), CHAPTER 28, STATUTORY 
INSTRUMENT 72, WHICH SETS THE MINIMUM AGE OF EMPLOYMENT 
IN ZIMBABWE AT 16; AND (2) THE CHILD ADOPTION AND 
PROTECTION ACT, WHICH INCORPORATES ILO CONVENTION 182 
AND PROHIBITS "WORST FORMS OF CHILD LABOR." 
 
3. (U) DESPITE THE LAWS ON THE BOOKS, THE GOVERNMENT OF 
ZIMBABWE HAS DONE LITTLE IN RECENT YEARS TO STOP THE 
PRACTICE OF CHILD LABOR, WHICH OCCURS FREQUENTLY ON 
FARMS (BOTH SMALL-SCALE AND COMMERCIAL) AND IN CITIES 
WHERE CHILDREN OFTEN WORK AS DOMESTIC SERVANTS OR IN THE 
INFORMAL TRADING SECTOR. AS MORE ADULT ZIMBABWEANS ARE 
LOST TO HIV/AIDS (AN ESTIMATED 25 PERCENT OF THE 
COUNTRY'S ADULT POPULATION IS HIV-POSITIVE), THE PROBLEM 
OF CHILD LABOR IS GROWING, AS CIRCUMSTANCES FORCE MORE 
CHILDREN OUT OF SCHOOL AND INTO JOBS TO SUPPORT 
THEMSELVES AND OTHER FAMILY MEMBERS. THE ILO FUNDED A 
STUDY IN LATE 1999 BY THE GOZ'S CENTRAL STATISTICAL 
OFFICE ON CHILD LABOR PRACTICES. THE GOZ SENT ITS 
PRELIMINARY RESULTS TO GENEVA FOR COMMENT AND, ACCORDING 
TO THE ILO OFFICE IN HARARE, INTENDS TO HOLD A WORKSHOP 
TO RELEASE THE OFFICIAL RESULTS IN AUGUST 2000. (THE GOZ 
AND ILO DECLINED TO MAKE A COPY OF THE PRELIMINARY 
REPORT AVAILABLE TO THE EMBASSY PRIOR TO ITS OFFICIAL 
RELEASE.) 
 
4. (U) IN A JUNE 19 CONVERSATION WITH LABOFF, MS. NELLY 
DHLEMBEU, DEPUTY DIRECTOR OF SOCIAL WELFARE AT THE 
MINISTRY OF PUBLIC SERVICE, LABOR, AND SOCIAL WELFARE, 
                       UNCLASSIFIED 
 
PAGE 04        HARARE  03348  01 OF 02  210915Z 
COULD NOT IDENTIFY ANY SPECIFIC GOZ PROGRAMS CURRENTLY 
IN OPERATION THAT PROMOTE BETTER ACCESS TO PRIMARY 
SCHOOLING. AS MS. DHLEMBEU EXPLAINED, THE GOZ'S 
EDUCATION AND SOCIAL WELFARE BUDGETS ARE ALREADY 
STRETCHED TOO THIN. THE GOVERNMENT CANNOT AFFORD TO HIRE 
ENOUGH TEACHERS TO FILL DEMANDING POSITIONS IN PRIMARY 
AND SECONDARY SCHOOLS IN REMOTE RURAL AREAS (A 
CONTINUOUS PROBLEM FOR THE MINISTRY OF EDUCATION). THE 
GOZ OFTEN LACKS FUNDS TO MAINTAIN THE INFRASTRUCTURE OF 
PUBLIC SCHOOLS (PARTICULARLY IN THE RURAL AREAS), MANY 
OF WHICH SUFFER FROM A LACK OF WATER, ELECTRICITY, 
BOOKS, SCHOOL SUPPLIES, AND OTHER BASIC NEEDS. AS A 
RESULT, SAID DHLEMBEU, THE GOZ HAS LITTLE LEFT TO FUND 
ADDITIONAL CHILDREN'S EDUCATION PROGRAMS. (COMMENT: 
ZIMBABWE'S ECONOMY HAS BEEN IN A TAILSPIN SINCE 1998 AND 
CONTINUES TO WORSEN. THE GOZ IS OPERATING ON A 
SHOESTRING, WITH ALL BUT ESSENTIAL SERVICES AND PROGRAMS 
ON HOLD INDEFINITELY. WE DO NOT EXPECT TO SEE ANY GOZ 
FUNDING FOR ADDITIONAL CHILDREN'S EDUCATION OR CHILD 
LABOR PROGRAMS ANY TIME SOON, UNLESS THE ILO IS THE SOLE 
CONTRIBUTOR. END COMMENT.) 
 
5. (U) SEVERAL NGOS CONTINUE THEIR WORK TO PROMOTE 
BETTER ACCESS TO EDUCATION AND STEER FAMILIES AWAY FROM 
CHILD LABOR, BUT THEIR BUDGETS ARE MEAGER AND THEIR 
SUCCESS LIMITED, PARTICULARLY GIVEN THE FACT THAT CHILD 
 
                       UNCLASSIFIED 
 
                           UNCLASSIFIED     PTQ2799 
 
PAGE 01        HARARE  03348  02 OF 02  210915Z 
ACTION AF-00 
 
INFO  LOG-00   AID-00   CEA-01   CIAE-00  SMEC-00  COME-00  CTME-00 
      DODE-00  ITCE-00  WHA-00   SRPP-00  EAP-00   EB-00    ED-01 
      EXME-00  EUR-00   E-00     UTED-00  VC-00    FRB-00   HHS-01 
      H-01     SSA-01   TEDE-00  INR-00   IO-00    ITC-01   LAB-01 
      L-00     AC-01    NEA-00   NSAE-00  NSCE-00  OES-01   OIC-02 
      OMB-01   OPIC-01  PRS-00   ACE-00   P-00     SP-00    SSO-00 
      SS-00    STR-00   TRSE-00  USIE-00  SA-00    PRM-01   DRL-02 
      G-00     SAS-00     /016W 
                  ------------------65349E  210915Z /38 
R 210920Z JUN 00 
FM AMEMBASSY HARARE 
TO SECSTATE WASHDC 6358 
DEPT OF LABOR WASHDC 
INFO CHILD LABOR COLLECTIVE 
USMISSION GENEVA 
 
UNCLAS SECTION 02 OF 02 HARARE 003348 
 
SIPDIS 
 
AF/EPS FOR TONY HOLMES 
 
EB/TPP/BTA FOR VLAD SAMBAIEW 
 
DRL/IL FOR CHRIS CAMILLO 
 
DOL/ILAB FOR MAUREEN JAFFE AND MARCIA EUGENIO 
 
GENEVA FOR USTR 
                       UNCLASSIFIED 
 
PAGE 02        HARARE  03348  02 OF 02  210915Z 
 
DEPT PASS USTR FOR OAA AND TD 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: ELAB, EIND, ETRD, PHUM, SOCI, ZI 
SUBJECT: CHILD LABOR IN ZIMBABWE 
 
LABOR IN ZIMBABWE IS A LONGSTANDING, WIDELY ACCEPTED 
OCCURRENCE. GROUPS SUCH AS SAVE THE CHILDREN U.K., 
CATHOLIC RELIEF SERVICES, FARM ORPHANS' SUPPORT TRUST -- 
AS WELL AS SEVERAL FARMERS' UNIONS -- HAVE PROGRAMS IN 
SOME CITIES AND COMMERCIAL FARMING AREAS. THEIR 
INFLUENCE IS LIMITED, THOUGH, AND THERE IS RELATIVELY 
LITTLE INTERACTION BETWEEN THESE GROUPS AND RELATED 
GOVERNMENT OFFICES (ALTHOUGH THE NGOS' RELATIONS WITH 
THE GOZ ARE USUALLY QUITE GOOD). 
 
MCDONALD 
 
                       UNCLASSIFIED 
 
> 

Latest source of this page is cablebrowser-2, released 2011-10-04