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Broke Zimbabwe Govt to Stagger Workers' Bonuses

Most people working for private companies say they are not getting bonuses this year due to the poor performance of firms owing to liquidity constraints.

The government says its coffers are empty and as a result some of its employees will not get their 13th cheque this month as expected, much to the annoyance of leaders of the workers’ representatives.

Speaking to Studio 7 after meeting leaders of workers’ representative bodies in the capital Thursday, Public Service and Labor Minister Nicholas Goche said the government will not be able to pay bonuses to all its workers as expected because its coffers are empty.

Goche said this decision was reached following consultations with the finance ministry.

But Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe general secretary, Raymond Majongwe, said government workers should be treated equally.

President of the Progressive Educators Union of Zimbabwe, Wilson Makanyaire, echoed the same sentiments saying government should walk its talk on its promises for its employees’ bonuses.

Meanwhile, Goche said negotiations between government and its employees for salary adjustments are expected to resume next month.

However, Majongwe warned that civil servants may down their tools if the negotiations do not yield the desired results.

Civil servants say they want their salaries increased so that the least paid worker earns at least $680 per month.

A recent survey conducted by the Consumer Council of Zimbabwe concluded that a family of six requires at least $592 per month to survive.

Currently, the least paid government employee earns $250.

Mr. Goche, however, did not speak on the allegations being levelled against him by colleagues in Zanu PF in the faction allegedly led by Justice Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa that he visited Europe and passed through Russia and South Africa seeking to hire hit-men to kill President Robert Mugabe if he refused to leave office at the party’s elective December congress.

Goche, according to the state-controlled media, is in the faction allegedly supporting the beleaguered Vice President Joice Mujuru.

The former State Security Minister told The Herald newspaper Wednesday that he had never been to Israel and that he does not know anything about the said plan.

He is likely going to be dumped like many others in his camp allegedly linked to Mrs. Mujuru. The party’s supreme-making body, the Politburo, meets this Saturday to discuss this and other issues as the congress dates draw closer.

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