PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe’s cash-strapped Zanu PF has pledged to pay all its workers’ outstanding salaries and bonuses before year-end.
This was revealed by newly-appointed Zanu PF secretary for administration Ignatius Chombo in Harare yesterday.
Addressing the workers at the party headquarters before a luncheon hosted for them, Chombo said he was compiling a list of the grievances the workers were facing with the hope of addressing them.
Chief among them, Chombo said, was to adjust workers’ salaries to make them competitive.
“I am assured by the person who is in charge of the finance and we are going to pay you all the salary arrears and bonuses before the end of the year,” Chombo said, amid wild cheers from the impoverished workers.
The party is believed to have last paid its workers three months ago with most of its business ventures facing collapse.
A report tabled by the party’s finance department to the central committee at the just-ended congress indicated that the party owed its creditors over $11 million.
The report stated that the party was relying on a $6 million bank overdraft for the 2014 financial year, which had accrued interest in the margin of half a million dollars. The party spent $11, 1 million against income of $3,9 million — creating a $7 million deficit.
In August, delegates to the national youth conference in Harare were bailed out by the First Family after going without food as the party coffers were dry.
But Chombo yesterday said he was aware of the challenges that the workers were facing, from limited office space to antiquated office equipment.
Meanwhile, Chombo admitted that the party had been duped into presiding over a farm input joint venture involving members of its Youth League and Lasch Enterprises Private Limited that eventually led to the creaming off of over 7 000 desperate of over a million dollars.
He said the matter was now under police investigation while the party through the security department led by Kembo Mohadi would be holding its own probe.
“As a party we condemn the abuse of the hard earned resources of our populace. Any empowerment initiatives must be the interest of the majority not for the benefit of a selected few and must be clear, transparent, fair legal and above board,” Chombo said.
“Affected farmers and the public are advised that the police have been accordingly informed and the law will take its course without fear and favour.”