Government Fails To Pay Bonuses For Health Sector

GOVERNMENT health workers failed to access their 2015 bonuses which were due yesterday, with the Health Services Board (HSB) blaming Treasury for the delay.

HSB executive director Ruth Kaseke confirmed the delay in a letter dated March 31 2016, addressed to Health ministry permanent secretary Gerald Gwinji.

“As you might be aware, bonus payment for health workers had been scheduled for today, March 31, 2016. Please advise all institutions that there has been a delay in the honouring of this and we await further details from Treasury,” Kaseke said.

HSB spokesperson Nyasha Maravanyika confirmed the development yesterday, adding government had not yet given them new dates.

“There is a slight delay in the payment of bonuses. Treasury has not told us of any new days. So any time from now, government may process the bonuses,” Maravanyika said.

However, Health and Child Care minister David Parirenyatwa expressed shock at the development, saying he expected the bonuses to be paid urgently.

“We expect bonuses to be paid. We want them to be given their money,” Parirenyatwa said.

Government has, since the end of last year, been struggling to fund its monthly salary bill, and began to stagger bonus payments in February this year, starting with the security sector.

Health workers were supposed to be paid this month-end, with the education sector following suit in April and then the rest of the civil servants in May.

At one time early last year, Finance minister Patrick Chinamasa ruled out payment of 2015 civil servants’ bonuses, citing cash flow challenges, before President Robert Mugabe ordered him to rescind the decision.