September 10, 2020

Government, civil servants aim for salary compromise

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Taku Chihambakwe

Government and civil servants want to “meet halfway” in their ongoing salary negotiations.

The two parties first met in the capital, Harare, on Wednesday, with Government tabling a 40 percent salary increase proposal. 

However, the civil servants flatly rejected this offer, maintaining they want to be paid in United States dollars.

The Government employees also argued that the offer was way below the poverty datum line which was ZWL$14.000 in August 2020.

In the end, the parties agreed to extend the US$75 non-taxable Covid-19 allowance.

Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare Minister Professor Paul Mavima told ZTN: “Indeed, the negotiations were held on Wednesday and I am happy that the workers and Government agreed that the US75 allowance be extended till December.

“The process might take the Government moving a few inches from where we are and the same goes for the workers until we find each other.” 

But, Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe Secretary General Raymond Majongwe argues teachers must be allowed to negotiate for their conditions separately as is the case with nurses.

He also took aim at the Apex Council “for letting workers down”.

“The Apex Council is just bringing the wrath of the people on itself. It is an embarrassment. They must stand aside and let a new council come on board and negotiate with the Government because they have failed,” he said. 

He added the latest Government offer does not meet their demand for salaries to match the US$480 that obtained in 2018.

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