Govt unable to pay bonuses

Source: Govt unable to pay bonuses – DailyNews Live January 26, 2017

Mugove Tafirenyika

HARARE – Cash bonuses for civil servants will no longer be paid this year
because government has no money, with restive unions threatening
industrial action.

This emerged at a meeting between government and civil servants’
representatives yesterday to discuss their welfare.

Finance minister Patrick Chinamasa, Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe governor John
Mangudya and Public Service minister Prisca Mupfumira (pictured) told
civil servants that government could only afford to pay them using
residential stands and other non-monetary benefits, an offer rejected by
government workers.

“We presented civil servants with three options in the fruitful meeting we
had, so they will go and consult with their stakeholders while we also
consult further,” Mupfumira told journalists after the meeting.

She added that the two parties will meet again towards the end of
February.

Although Mupfumira described the meeting as “fruitful”, civil servants
came out of the indaba seething with anger, accusing government of
insincerity and threatening industrial action.

The Amalgamated Rural Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (Artuz), whose membership
has been on a go-slow since the beginning of the term in protest over the
delay in bonus payments, described the meeting as a damp squib.

Artuz secretary-general Robson Chere described Chinamasa’s offer as “vague
and dubious”. He said teachers were already negotiating, on their own,
with various local authorities for residential stands.

“Artuz will urgently serve the Public Service Commission with notification
to go on strike within 14 days if government does not release dates for
bonus payments,” Chere said.

Progressive Teachers’ Union of Zimbabwe (PTUZ) Raymond Majongwe said:
“…civil servants have suffered enough and we cannot accept being told
that we have to wait when we are witnessing the levels of opulence being
exhibited in government.

“We are not going to accept a situation where we are asked to forego
tradition.

“We are going to further consult but our position is not going to change
and we are united  in our demands  but we know there are a few of us who
would want to side with government.

“They risk being rejected by their membership because all of us as civil
servants are all agreed on our position.”

Speaking to the Daily News on the sidelines of Mupfumira’s press briefing,
Zimbabwe Rural Teachers’ Union (ZRTU) said while it appreciates the
efforts by their employers, the proposals government was tabling were
“unpalatable.”

“We are going to consult our membership but obviously we will be digging
our own graves to ask  our bitter members to accept any offer that does
make them smile all the way to the bank,”  ZRTU deputy president Gibson
Mushangu  said, adding that teachers wanted government to pronounce
payment dates “and nothing else.”

In a leaked document showing 2017 National Budget pressure points that
Chinamasa circulated to all stakeholders attending the meeting, the
Treasury chief said government’s total expenditure demands stand at $942,5
million.

In respect of employment cost arrears, government owes $352,1 million,
$69,9 million arrears for  December 2016 wage
bill.

Chinamasa also revealed that  government owed service providers such as
Premier Service Medical Aid Society ($8,9 million)  National Social
Security Authority (Nssa $173,1m) dating back  to September 2013, while
another $180 million is owed in respect of  last year’s bonuses among a
series of other arrears.

The public sector wage bill currently accounts for over 80 percent of
government expenditure.

To manage the fiscal pressures, government has resolved to pay civil
servants almost every week and in order of priority since the beginning of
last year.

COMMENTS

WORDPRESS: 2
  • comment-avatar
    Joe Cool 5 years ago

    Could “Fruitful” possibly signify an intention to pay them in bananas?

  • comment-avatar

    For all we know anything that qualifies as an Urban or Township “Residential Stand” will never cost ZERO CENTS to provide. In fact an Urban STAND will never cost less that $1000 to provide (and , that is servicing costs only, never mind the land price). We all know the cost of virgin land it is always negligible compared to servicing costs. Hence it doesn’t matter that government already owns all the land in the country as zanu pf claims – it still has to be serviced. Surely, zanu pf does not own the servicing. Yes they may claim to own the land but not the most critical component of provision of STANDS which is servicing. Asi kana ari maSTANDS emumaruwa – yes. So, a civil servant is now being told kuti bonus rako kupiwa STAND naSabhuku – interesting I see! Then Sabhuku iyee we zanu pf ozoti “come elections you shld ask me to come and vote for you regardless of how educated you are – in the Election Booth you are illiterate nePhD yako – otherwise mubhuku mangu unotama”. NdomaSTANDS ari kutaurwa hapana mamwe guys.

    So, what this says is there no deal from the employer on the TABLE for civil servants at all. Yes. Should they choose to accept the no deal the obvious will happen: which is a few zanu pf functionaries masquerading as civil servants (who are actually gost-workers & zanu pf land barons) will get a some stands as some kind of proof that zanu pf is delivering on its promise. But as usual it will be a self-enrichment & smokescreen exercise. Up to civil servants to swallow the perennial lies or stand your ground & demand what is rightfully due to you.