Zimbabwean Union Leader Wellington Chibebe Elected ITUC Deputy General Secretary

The ITUC General Council meeting in Brussels last week unanimously elected Zimbabwean trade union leader Wellington Chibebe to the position of Deputy General Secretary of the global trade union body. Chibebe, 47, will complete his current term as General Secretary of the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) and will join ITUC General Secretary Sharan Burrow and Deputy General Secretary Jaap Wienen as a full-time elected official after the ZCTU Congress later this year.

“Wellington Chibebe has an outstanding record as a leader in Zimbabwe, defending workers rights and campaigning for democracy, and is a highly-respected trade unionist both in Africa and around the world. We look forward to his talent, energy and commitment being deployed as a key part of our international team,” said Burrow.

The General Council also admitted five new organisations into ITUC membership: the Confédération des Syndicats Autonomes of Cameroon (CSAC); Confédération Nationale des Travailleurs of the Central African Republic (CNTC); the Unión Nacional de Trabajadores of Chile (UNT); the Confédération Nationale des Travailleurs of Mauritania (CNTM) and the Trade Union Congress of Tanzania (TUCTA).

Other major items on the Council agenda included a decision to launch a global campaign to press telecommunications giant Deutsche Telekom to fully respect fundamental workers’ rights in all its operations around the globe, and special resolutions on climate change, sustainable economic recovery, migration and precarious and informal work . Resolutions on Egypt, where the ITUC announced a global trade union day of action on 8 February and Tunisia, were also passed, along with a “Workers’ Pact for Peace and Justice in Palestine and Israel” which sets out steps for achieving a two-state solution and for building the Palestinian economy in line with the Resolution on Democracy, Peace, Security and the Role of the United Nations adopted at the ITUC Vancouver Congress last June.

Detailed work-plans to implement the decisions of the Vancouver Congress were also adopted, along with new guidelines for trade union development cooperation work, campaign action to support employment and trade union rights for young workers, and an international organising programme for young women.

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