RIOT police yesterday had to intervene and disperse hundreds of riotous job seekers who thronged Great Zimbabwe University (GZU) seeking employment as security guards.
REPORT BY TATENDA CHITAGU OWN CORRESPONDENT
The incident highlighted the country’s high rate of unemployment currently pegged at more than 80%.
GZU is considered one of the highest-paying employers in Masvingo where the industrial sector has almost vanished. Among the job seekers were junior police officers.
Some 400 people gathered as early as 5am after information filtered that the university was looking for security guards. By noon they were still milling around, despite a notice flighted by the institution’s deputy registrar, human resources and administration officer Luke Kasenya, informing the job seekers that they should wait for a Press advertisement.
Contacted for comment, GZU spokesperson James July initially accused NewsDay of malice and later promised to call back, but failed to do so until the time of going to print last night.
However, sources at the university said Kasenya first addressed the crowd, but they refused to leave.
Kasenya, according to sources, then pasted a notice at the main gate advising the job seekers that the university would advertise the posts in newspapers.
Part of the notice read: “Prospective job seekers: Please be advised that all job seekers should respond to official Great Zimbabwe University advertisements
. . . ”
After all else had failed, the university then summoned the police to disperse the restive crowd.
Tendai Mhofu, who was among the crowd, said: “Riot police had to come after the people spent several hours waiting to get jobs. They were hoping to get jobs as security officers and some known junior police officers were among the crowd.”
Masvingo provincial police spokesperson Inspector Peter Zhanero confirmed the development, but said he wanted time to get the finer details.
“I heard something of that nature, but let me look into the details. I will get back to you,” he said.