via ZBC workers finally get paid – DailyNews Live by Fungi Kwaramba 2 JANUARY 2014
Workers at scandal-hit Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) will start receiving their outstanding salaries today.
This comes after government slashed astronomical wages of a bloated management that has been treating itself to opulence at a time workers went for seven months without pay.
Officials say government is bailing out the state broadcaster and will soon wield the axe on irresponsible top management.
Currently headed by Allan Chiweshe in an acting capacity, ZBC owes its workers close to $8 million.
An audit by government has unearthed shocking details of at least 400 ghost workers on the payroll.
In a statement posted on the ZBC website, Chiweshe said the organisation’s managers will, with immediate effect, be getting allowances only, as government moves to adjust the public-funded broadcaster’s salary system.
The managers will not be getting their salaries.
Workers at ZBC “should be able to access their money starting this Thursday,” the statement said.
Chiweshe said salaries for the rest of staff members were being processed.
In a move designed to ensure that ghost workers, who included some dead persons, will not get salaries, departmental managers at ZBC have been asked to compile names of real workers in respective departments, who should receive salaries.
Sivukile Simango, the ZBC spokesperson, declined to comment saying he was still on holiday an=d referred questions to Ndoro, who was not immediately available.
Supa Mandiwanzira, deputy minister for Information, Media and Broadcasting Services, revealed in November last year that ZBC management were earning astronomical salaries at a time workers were not being paid.
“It is quite shocking that for instance the CEO (Happison Muchechetere) earns $27 000 plus, over and above that earns $3 000 in allowances for housing, $2 500 allowance, $3 000 for home entertainment, unlimited business entertainment allowance,” Mandiwanzira said.
“The corporation must pay off his mortgage facility, must built a durawall (security wall), must built an entertainment section at his premises.”
Mandiwanzira said the ZBC boss was entitled to unlimited fuel per week, substantial amounts for his domestic workers, unlimited air tickets to fly in the country with his immediate family among other unbelievable perks for the loss making entity.
Muchechetere, who became substantive chief executive in May 2009, has drawn salaries and allowances approximated at $2,28 million to date.
He was recently sent on forced leave to pave way for a forensic audit to be undertaken after Mandiwanzira’s boss Proffessor Jonathan Moyo dissolved the board led by Cuthbert Dube.
Informed sources at ZBC say more heads are likely to roll.
The board had failed to submit a turnaround strategy document within 14 days which had been requested by the minister.
George Charamba, secretary for Information, Media and Broadcasting Services, last month told a parliamentary portfolio committee on Media, Information and Broadcasting Services that at least 500 workers at ZBC would be retrenched in a restructuring exercise meant to turnaround the public broadcaster that is saddled with a $44,3 million debt.
The corporation is technically insolvent as it is realising only $275 000 per month in revenue against a budget of $2,3 million of which $1,6 million should go to workers’ salaries.
Additionally, the company is in arrears of $8,3 million owed to the workers for outstanding salaries, while it also has to meet other statutory obligations.