Category Archives: WOZA Moya newletters

WOZA MOYA Valentine’s Day Edition 2006

WATCH OUT FOR WOZA ON VALENTINE’S DAY 2006 WE ARE MARCHING FOR BREAD AND ROSES!
We want more than day to day survival – we deserve roses and the dignity they stand for. This year’s theme is inspired by the `Bread and Roses` strike led and won by American women textile workers in 1912. For women in 2006 the bread stands for the need for affordable food and the roses represent the need to be dignified and the call for social justice.

WOZA IZATSHENGISELA IFUNA IZINKWA LAMALUBA!
Sikhathele ukuphilela usuku ngosuku – sifuna ukuzotha okumelwe ngamaluba.

WOZA IRIKURATIDZIRA NEZVECHINGWA NEMARUWA!
Tinoda zvinopfuura kurarama kwepazuwa nepazuva – tinokodzerawo maruwa nerukudzo.

Twelfth January 1912 was the anniversary of the start of the Bread and Roses strike in Lawrence, United States; one of the most important struggles in the history of the U.S. working class. A new law had reduced the working week and cut the average wage – the last straw for workers living on the edge of starvation. Thousands of women and men started a spontaneous strike that rippled through two dozen textile factories. Some 23,000 people left the mills and poured into the streets. The Lawrence strike was different in two ways: women led it and there was an effort to unite workers of all nationalities around four demands: a 15-percent wage increase, a 54- hour work week, double pay for overtime and the rehiring of all strikers without discrimination. The workers also saw the strike as part of a broader struggle – they wanted to fight for social justice; dignity as well as basic needs.

Police threw the women in jail but they refused to pay the fines. As soon as they were released they returned to protest. One lawyer commented, “One policeman can handle 10 men, while it takes 10 police to handle one woman.” The strike went on for over two months. Children were starving and had to be sent to nearby towns. When they tried to leave, police responded by attacking women and children, forcing the children to stay. That was the turning point. An international outcry forced the government to investigate, putting more pressure on the bosses.

Finally on March 14, the strikers won a 25-percent increase, pay for overtime and no discrimination against strikers. This strike had shown that low-paid, oppressed workers of diverse nationalities could unite and organise a powerful struggle against ill-treatment. It stands as a shining example of how to build unity with women in the lead. One reporter wrote of the Lawrence strike: “It was the spirit of the workers that seemed dangerous. They were always marching and singing. The strikers not only wanted decent pay, but also a chance to enjoy the good things of life. They carried signs saying, “We want bread and roses too!

And they sang: “As we go marching, marching, we battle too for men, for they are women’s children, and we mother them again. Our lives shall not be sweated from birth until life closes; hearts starve as well as bodies; give us bread, but give us roses.”


Omama labobaba kweleAmerica batshengisela mhlaka 12 Zibandlela 1912. Babetshengisela befuna izinkwa lamaluba, ngoba umthetho omutsha usuqume amalanga okusebenza njalo usuyehlise iholo lokhu kwenza izisebenzi ezazivele zilamba zithwale nzima. Kwatshengisela omama labobaba abayi 23 000, kwavalwa amafemu amanengi. Ukutshengesela lokhu kwakukhokhelwa ngomama ababefuna into ezine: ukukhwezelwa kweholo nge15%, ukusebenza amahola ayi54 ngeviki; ukuhola okuphindwe kabili nxa bengazebenza amahola edlulisileyo; lokuthi labo ababexotshiwe betshengisela babiselwe emsebenzini kungela bandlululo. Izisebenzi zabona ukutshengisela kuyingxenye yokulwela ukuzikhulula. Babefuna ukulwela inhlalakahle, ukuzotha, lokuthola okufaneleyo impilweni. Amapholisa abajikela omama laba emajele kodwa bala ukuhlawula imali yokuthi bonile. Besanda kukhululwa babuyela bayatshengisela. Omunye ugqhwetha wathi “Ipholisa elilodwa lingabopha amadoda alitshumi kodwa kuthatha amapholisa alitshumi ukubopha umama oyedwa.”

Mhlaka 14 Mbimbitho, abatshengiseli banqoba, iholo lakhwezwa nge25%, bathola ukuhlawulwa amahola adlulisileyo, ababexotshiwe babiselwa emsebenzini. Ukutshengisela kwezisebenzi ezihola iholo elincane njalo zincindezelwe zivela kuzizwe ezehlukeneyo zingabambana, ziqoqane ziyenze ukutshengisela okukhulu. Intathelizindaba yabhala yathi, “Ukuzinikela kwezisebenzi kwesabisa….. babehlabela behamba. Ababetshengisela babengafuni iholo elithuthukileyo kuphela babefuna into ezithokozisa impilo. Babethwele imbiko ethi ‘Sifuna izinkwa lamaluba futhi!” Babehlabela besithi, “Sitshengisela nje sitshengiselela labobaba, ngoba bayinzalo yabomama, njalo singomama babo. Impilo yethu ayisoze ibengeyezithukuthuku kusukela sizalwa size sife; inhliziyo ziyalamba kanye lemizimba ngakho ke lisinike izinkwa, kodwa lisinike lamaluba.


Musi wa 12 Ndira 1912 vakadzi nevarume vekuAmerica vakaratidzira. Chiratidzo ichi chainzi Chingwa neMaruva. Mutemo mutsva wakanga waderedza basa revhiki zvichiita kuti vaomerwe neupenyu. Zviuru zviviri nenhatu zvemepfumbamwe zvevanhukadzi nevanhurume vakaratidzira vachivhara mafekitari. Kuratidzira uku kwaitungamirirwa nevanhukadzi vaive nezvinangwa zvina: kuwedzerwa kwemari inopiwa vashandi nechikamu chinoita gumi nechishanu kubva muzana, ma hour makumi mashanu nemana ekushanda pavhiki, kupiwa mubhadharo wakapetwa kaviri kana vakapfuura nguva yakatarwa yekushanda uye kudzokera kwevaratidzira kumabasa pasina rusaruro. Asi vashandi vakaonazve kuratidzira uku sechidimbu cherusununguko rwakakura – vaida kurwira magariro akarurama anemutsigo uye kuwana zvakakodzerana neupenyu. Mapurisa akasunga vakadzi ava asi vakaramba kubhadhara Mari yeusungwa. Vachingobudiswa mujere vakadzokera kunoratidzira zvekare. Rimwe gweta rakati “mupurisa mumwe anochengetedza varume gumi asi zvinoda mapurisa gumi kuchengetedza mukadzi mumwe.” Kuratidzira uku kwakaenderera mberi kwemwedzi miviri.

Pakupedzisira musi wa 14 Kukadzi varatidziri ava vakawana kukwidzwa kwemari inopiwa vashandi nezvikamu zviviri nechishanu kubva muzana, kushanda kupfuura nguva dzakatarwa uye varatidziri vachidzoka kumabasa. Kuratidzira uku kwakataridza kuti vashandi vanobhadharwa mari shoma, vakadzvanyirirwa vendudzi dzose vanokwanisa kubatana, kurongeka, uye kuratidzira hondo yakasimba. Mumwe mutori wenhau akati, “Wanga uri mweya wevashandi wanga uchityisa…vaigara vachifamba nekuimba. Varatidziri vaisada muhoro wakawanda chete asi vaida neupenyu wakanaka. Vaitakura mifananidzo yakanyorwa kunzi ‘tinoda chingwa nemaruva zvekare.'” Uye vaiimba kuti, “Patinofamba, patinofamba, tonorwirawo vanhurume zvekare, nekuti vana vevanhukadzi uye tinovachengetawo. Upenyu hwedu haucharwadzi kurarama dakara tafa, moyo uchiomerwa semuviri, tipei chingwa nemaruva!”


Women of Zimbabwe Arise (WOZA) hosted an initial consultation on the subject of Social Justice, two hundred delegates from WOZA, other civic organisations, and two Zambian activists attended.

Consultation Objectives

  • to bring the national discourse back to the issues that concern ordinary people, giving them back the initiative
  • refocus attention on the basic and fundamental rights that belong to us all
  • ensure that the voices of grass-roots communities are consulted and heard
  • construct a new agenda of social justice around which we can all mobilise for action
  • create and raise expectations of people as to what political leaders should deliver and how to hold them accountable

Initial consultation overview

Social justice can be defined as a system where people have equal opportunities/access to social, economic, cultural, religious and political needs regardless of race, gender, creed or any other form of discrimination.

It can be the way we interact with others and a method of governance which includes the following:

  • Full enjoyment of all social, political, economic and cultural rights
  • An equal society including gender equality
  • Respect for human rights including women’s and children’s rights
  • Freedoms including speech, assembly and association
  • Respect and tolerance of diversity – culture and religion
  • Transparency and accountability
  • Equal participation in political and economic decision-making
  • Equal application of the law – access to justice and understanding of the law
  • Correction of past injustices such as Gukurahundi and Murambatsvina
  • Gutsaruzhinji/inhlalakahle yabantu (Good living)
  • Access to affordable education
  • Adequate and affordable food
  • Access to affordable housing, electricity, sanitation and clean water
  • Access to affordable healthcare and medication including anti-retrovirals (ARVs)
  • Equal and fair access to fertile land, inputs, equipment and secure ownership
  • Equal opportunities to resources, employment, self-help projects and the right to earn a living wage
  • Development of adequate infrastructure and access to affordable transport
  • Environmentally sustainable usage of resources

The consultation process continues – we would like your opinion on how we can make Zimbabwe a socially just nation. Email us at wozazimbabwe@yahoo.com or write to us. Join us in the street to see how your dreams can become possibilities…