Civil service restructuring has already started – Chinamasa

Source: Civil service restructuring has already started – Chinamasa | The Financial Gazette December 15, 2016

GOVERNMENT has already begun to restructure the country’s civil service in an exercise expected to half the public sector wage bill by 2020, Finance and Economic Development Minister, Patrick Chinamasa has indicated.

This year public sector employment costs are seen at US$3,14 billion from a budget envelope of US$4,1 billion, which is about 91 percent, but will drop by US$140 million to US$3 billion, 73 percent of the 2017 budget.

Speaking at a meeting with business to discuss the 2017 budget on Friday, Chinamasa said the need to reduce salaries, benefits and the work force in parastatals was more than glaring.

“We have already started the process (restructuring), but it may seem slow to some of you because you are expecting a Big Bang….change is always difficult, but I am glad that the whole government system is now on the same page…they fully acknowledge what needs to be done,” he said.

“It may take us up to 2019-2020, by then I am confident we should have been able to reduce the wage bill to something like 50 to 55 percent of total expenditure. If we proceed on the bases at which we are already proceeding, we can do it,” he added

President Robert Mugabe had also earlier said, in his State of the Nation address, that government had adopted an audit report of the civil service which, among other reforms, recommends centralising recruitment, the abolition of redundant and vacant non-critical posts and merging some departments, things which government pledged to do in its World Bank Staff Monitoring programme.

Whether or not government has indeed swallowed its pride after it rejected similar reforms by Chinamasa in his mid-term policy when he proposed to freeze public sector wages and bonuses for two years as well as cut the civil service by 25 000, remains to be seem. The Source