Civil servants start getting salaries
SOLDIERS received their July salaries yesterday, as the Government started paying its workers’ salaries for this month.
In interviews, soldiers confirmed that the Government had honoured its promise to pay them.
“We received our salaries today and we’re happy that the Government honoured its promise. We hope that efforts are being made to ensure that our salaries are paid on time every month,” said a soldier who requested anonymity.
The Government released the civil servants’ pay dates for July last week.
Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare Minister Prisca Mupfumira said the army and the Airforce of Zimbabwe would be paid yesterday followed by the health sector tomorrow.
She said the Zimbabwe Republic Police and the Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Services will be paid on July 29, followed by the education sector on August 2.
The rest of the civil service, Minister Mupfumira said, will get their salaries on August 6 while the pensioners will be paid on August 12.
Workers at grant-aided institutions will receive their July salaries as well as their 2015 bonuses on August 16.
“I’m happy to be paid,” said another soldier, “but I’m unhappy about the continuing cash shortage. My bank is giving only $100 today. What can a family man do with $100?”
Government normally pays its workforce beginning mid-month but has of late been forced to break the tradition owing to revenue challenges.
Last month, the employer managed to pay the uniformed forces their June salaries within that month but pushed the dues for teachers and nurses to July 7 and 8, respectively.
Government offered the workers a $100 advance payment to allow them to travel to and from work while they waited for their salaries.
The move saw teachers and nurses calling for a threeday strike, which they immediately called off after Government honoured its obligation.
The workers argued the $100 was not enough as they had other obligations like rentals and bank loans to settle.
President Mugabe recently appealed to civil servants to be patient, saying the country was faced with an array of challenges that include illegal sanctions, drought as well as the use of the multi-currency system, mainly the US dollar that the country had little control over.
He said Government would strive to ensure that the problem of delays in salary payments was addressed.
Government is directing nearly $200 million every month towards salaries, a development that is unsustainable.
To rectify the challenge, the civil service is being rationalised with changes being implemented expected to save $400 million yearly.
VP Emmerson Mnangagwa