The Secret Man Mugabe Ignored But Is Now In Charge Of 161 Million People | WELLINGTON CHIBEBE EXCLUSIVE


“The stone that the builders rejected and dejected, is now supporting a crowd of 161 million people” – On the 14 June this year I had the enviable opportunity of meeting the legendary Wellington Chibebe, a man held like a piece of paper back home in Zimbabwe, but once out of the country, he quickly became a hard rock now holding a large population 10 times that of Zimbabwe.

By Simba Chikanza |  This man, now sitting as Deputy SG of the International Trade Union Confederation has under him over 161 million people (10 times Mugabe’s entire population!), and by the way, wait a minute, Wellington Chibebe also happens to be Zimbabwean!

journey to the top… Wellington Chibebe

It was a shiny hot afternoon in June and I had just jetted into Belgium. Struggling under the flaming temperature, I decided to dress casually and head straight for his office. After entering the building, we were taken on a long walk across the stately offices. There was a reception, and many workers occupying the whole floor space. But after seeing a string of Europeans suddenly I saw one African man. We were motioned into Mr Wellington Chibhebhe’s offices. He was introduced as the second most senior person in the world’s largest body of Trade Unions.

We had a lengthy chat and I conjoined my first ever moments with Mr Chibebe. Years before I used to cover him in the news, particularly when he was treated like trash, harassed, arrested and assaulted, all the way up to the time his party, the MDC-T cast him away from any influential position. They too, perhaps like Mugabe, failed to recognise this gem of a rock which now hails from the centre of the European Union, the seat of the world’s largest single market.

How this secret Zim stone was discovered by foreigners: Chibebe’s upbringing is all humble and non glorious – He was just a low ranking diesel plant fitter at the National Railways Of Zimbabwe.

He later joined the ZCTU in 2001 having previously served as President of the National Railway Workers’ Union, which he joined in 1988 after serving his apprenticeship as a diesel plant fitter.

He then worked hard at his low of lows job to later study law at the University Of South Africa. While burning the midnight candle, he managed to attain a Bachelor of Laws Degree (LLB) from UNISA.

He became the Secretary General of the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) and in 2011 Chibebe was elected Deputy General Secretary of the ITUC, the International Trade Union Confederation.

In 2014, he was re-elected as ITUC Deputy General Secretary. His vision for the future? Will he ever come back home?  ZimEye will in the coming weeks profile Chibebe’s career path past present and future.

I believe that there are many Zimbabwean precious stones scattered around the world who are like Chibebe  – this is ZimEye’s mission, to profile and network these great minds – get them to rebuild not only Zimbabwe, but the world beyond.

The ITUC regional organisations are the Asia-Pacific Regional Organisation (ITUC-AP), the African Regional Organisation (ITUC-AF) and the American Regional Organisation (TUCA). It cooperates with the European Trade Union Confederation, including through the Pan-European Regional Council. – ZimEye

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  • Tsododo

    How was he ignored by the President? Maida kuti aitwe seiko? Zvimwe zvinhu musangonyore mhani. Just tell us about about his ascention to glory. Why tie it to our house head of state? Stupid reporting.

  • Sekuri W

    verenga mhani iwe Tsododo. Urikupi nhasi?

  • Sondela

    How would he have taken advantage of opportunities that are there? Someone toiling somewhere without a job is more capable and more qualified than Chibebe.

    Why measure the usefulness of someone by the size of an office he occupies and the number of innocent souls under him?

  • Sondela

    Must read opportunities that are not there.

  • Nomusa Garikai

    President Mugabe’s corrupt and tyrannical regime is notorious for being wasteful of the country’s vast material and human resources. The country is truly blessed in have such gems as diamonds and people like Chibebe but cursed in having some of the most corrupt, incompetent and utter useless leaders in the world.

    It is not surprising that Zimbabweans are today the poorest people on earth and, I would not be surprise to hear, has the richest and most wasteful ruling elite in the world too!

    We have a chance to demand reforms and ensure free and fair election, only then can we be 100% certain of finally removing the corrupt, tyrannical and vote rigging Zanu PF from office. We have failed to do this in the past because we made the mistake of contesting elections without taking the precaution of implementing the reforms first and Zanu PF has rigged the vote again and again.

    “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expect a different result,” said Albert Einstein.

    After 37 years of rigged elections, repeated warnings not to contest the elections with no reforms from SADC and other, seeing how Zanu PF is already going through its vote rigging gears for ourselves, etc. I have a sickening feeling that Zimbabweans, led like sheep to the slaughter by our corrupt and incompetent opposition politicians, will be going into next year’s elections expecting a different result!

    Talk of being a cursed nation, what could possibly be worse than being a nation in which the overwhelming majority are mentally challenged, certified insane. Poor, poor Zimbabwe; for here is a nation that has proven beyond all doubt that it is incapable of self-government. We have become our own worst enemy with a knack for shooting ourselves in the foot or worse!

  • Mkwak

    Cursed nation for sure.

  • Bvukazberg

    Obviously the journo was paid to publish such crap

  • Bvukazberg

    The writer is only trying to raise the status of this man.That he occupies a spacious office somewhere in Europe does not qualify him as an intelligent mind who would change our situation.

  • Samaz Dr Lester

    Majerasi akakuzara iwe unobve nzvimbo ipi iwe? This is clearly an achievement by an African not to say a Zimbabwean for that matter. Ko iwewe what do you do if it is not bum cleaning in UK?

  • Mod