WASHINGTON DC —
The government, which is still to set pay dates for its workers, has moved in to quell dissent within civil servants following social media posts allegedly showing July pay dates having been moved to next month again like last month.
This comes at a time as fears are growing that those who did not turn up for work during the recent stay away will be victimized.
Postings on Facebook and messages on Whatsapp show dates ranging from mid-month for teachers and end of month for health personnel.
Labor minister, Prisca Mupfumira today called a meeting with the workers’ representatives to allay their fears, telling them that the dates would be made known this Friday, adding the delay would be not as much as last month.
She said the delay was caused by the absence of Finance Minister, Patrick Chinamasa and Reserve Bank governor, John Mangudya who had gone on a fundraising expedition but returned with an empty begging bowl.
We spoke to the spokesman of the Progressive Teachers’ Union of Zimbabwe, Enock Pradzayi who attended today’s meeting.
Said Paradzayi: “What came out was that the government does not have the pay dates for this month. All that is circulating on whatsapp and Facebook is not coming from Government.”
Studio 7 also reached economic commentator, Eddie Cross, who’s also the policy coordinator of the Movement for Democratic Change led by Morgan Tsvangirai.
“The situation is that right at this moment the government has not been able to pay pensions for June and that costs about $40 million and it covers about 380,000 people and by the end of the month treasury will have absolutely nothing,” said Cross.
He said that’s why they have not been able to fix pay dates for civil servants.
Cross said they have money for President Robert Mugabe to fly out of the country even though he takes an estimated $3 million per trip.
“Since 2013 revenue to the state has declined by about 37 percent. And if you look at the first quarter of this year revenue went down by 11 percent, so the situation is that salary costs are $230 million and the revenue is less than that. That is a fundamental problem,” he said.