Civil servants issue 10-day ultimatum


CIVIL servants yesterday gave government a 10-day ultimatum to increase their salaries or face a crippling strike. They made the threats after Finance minister Mthuli Ncube failed to fulfil his August promise to increase their salaries.

Mthuli had said government was considering increasing their salaries in local currency, and also the United States dollar component.

In a notice, the Federation of Zimbabwe Educators Unions (FOZEU) said industrial action was inevitable if government failed to meet their demands by September 25.

“Government has up to September 25 to review salaries of all civil servants. All civil servants will not be able to report for duty beginning September 26 if the September promise is not fulfilled,” they said after an urgent meeting yesterday.

“Federations are to organise their members for the collective action beginning September 26. The unions are hopeful that the government will address the salary crisis before September 26.”

Civil servants got paid this week, but there was no promised increment.

Yesterday, union representatives from the Educators Union of Zimbabwe, Amalgamated Rural Teachers Union of Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe Nurses Association, Progressive Rural Teachers Union of Zimbabwe as well as the Zimbabwe Teachers Associations met to plot the way forward.

Workers say they are being forced to source for US dollars from the parallel market to pay rentals and meet other expenses while government is insisting on paying them in local currency.

They are demanding United States dollar salaries.

“Civil servants legitimately expect a salary increment, if the government fails to fulfil the promise, a fight back from the civil servants will be justifiable,” the statement read.

FOZEU was initially pushing for job action beginning Monday September 19, but made a compromise to accommodate other civil servants who are still to receive their September salaries.

Civil servants are demanding United States dollar salaries citing runaway inflation, and skyrocketing prices of basic goods and services.

They say their measly salaries have made them paupers.

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