Prioritise workers’ safety: Minister

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Prioritise workers’ safety: MinisterMinister Kagonye

Herald Correspondent
Government is committed to providing decent working conditions in all sectors of the economy in line with International Labour Organisation (ILO) Standards.

This was said by Labour and Social Welfare Minister Petronella Kagonye during an Engineers’ Safety and Health workshop in Harare last week.

“We are committed to ensure that no employee should get injured or die due to occupational accidents or diseases,’’ said Minister Kagonye.

She said there had been a slight decline in work-related accidents and deaths in the last four years, with 5 491 seriously injured workers and 98 deaths in 2014.

About 5 380 serious injuries were recorded with 54 being fatal in 2015.

In the year 2016, 59 fatalities were recorded from the 5 360 injuries recorded, while 5 007 injuries occurred with 65 being fatal in 2017.

Although the figures show a decline, Minister Kagonye expressed concern as the numbers remained high and worrisome.

“After looking at these statistics, my question is, as safety and health practitioners responsible for ensuring safe engineering designs and safe operations in our industries, have we been effective in our various roles?” said Minister Kagonye.

She said together with the National Social Security Authority (NSSA), the ministry joined “Vision Zero” strategy global campaign which is spear-headed by the International Social Security Association (ISSA).

The campaign is aimed at curbing work-related accidents, injuries, diseases and fatalities to attain zero occupational injuries, diseases and fatalities at the work place. The strategy aims to harness the collective strength of social partners, including the Government, employers, employees and other occupational health stakeholders.