WASHINGTON DC —
Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare Minister Nicholas Goche on Tuesday met with civil servants representatives and gave them a five-day ultimatum to put their house in order and come up with the names of people who will make up the Apex Council before holding a similar meeting again next Monday.
Sources said the minister also took the opportunity to produce two letters, one written by Zimbabwe Teachers Association complaining about rumours on lack of bonuses the year, and another purportedly written by the Apex Council but signed by ZIMTA president Richard Gundani, blaming the current Council chairperson David
Dzatsunga for causing delays in the negotiation process.
This was said to have infuriated the other unions who then accused ZIMTA of going behind their backs for their own benefit.
But when the dust finally settled, they agreed to meet this Friday to resolve the leadership wrangles and come up with representatives for salary negotiations.
Civil servants are demanding that the lowest paid, who is currently getting $297 a month, be paid $570 in line with Zimbabwe's poverty datum line of over $560 a month for an urban family of six.
Disagreements in the composition of the Apex Council have further delayed salary negotiations.
Dzatsunga said they hope to iron out their differences on Friday and come up with a team of negotiators to champion the civil servants’ cause.
ZIMTA president Gundani said his association was acting in good faith when it wrote the two letters to Minister Goche.
He further noted that it was now time for the different groups representing civil servants to mature and put workers first.