By Mlondolozi Ndlovu
Harare, July 20, 2016 – PEOPLE’S Democratic Party (PDP) president and former Finance Minister Tendai Biti has demanded the resignation of his predecessor Patrick Chinamasa for failure to pay civil servants on time.
The cash-strapped government is currently failing to pay salaries for the month of July, with the finance ministry yet to give dates for the payment of the beleagured government workforce.
What has shocked many is the fact that even the military which is often preferred ahead of the rest is yet to get salaries.
A meeting held between the government and worker representatives Tuesday afternoon failed to produce any positive results with the government only promising it was going to give the dates for salary payments by Friday.
Meanwhile, Biti and his party have hit out at the Zanu PF led government for its failure to mobilise resources to pay salaries on time.
“Chinamasa must resign over failure to pay civil servants,” said Biti.
“The failure by the Zanu PF government to pay civil servants’ salaries for two consecutive months of June and July 2016 is unacceptable and gross violations of the rights of the civil servants.”
Biti slammed President Robert Mugabe’s government for allegedly practising modern day slavery against the country’s supreme law.
“Section 54 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe makes it clear that no person must be subjected to slavery and servitude,” he said.
He said it was unconstitutional for the government to neglect the payment of workers’ salaries.
“That same Constitution in Section 65 states that everyone has a right to be paid a fair and reasonable wage,” he said.
“Therefore, civil servants are entitled to their salaries. It is clear to us that the failure by government to pay civil servants is a result of self-induced policy distortions that have crippled this economy.”
The former Harare East legislator said President Mugabe’s old age and frailty presented a security concern which will give excuses for the country’s military to seize control of the state.
“Our biggest fear is that the total absence and frailty of the president will create a vacuum which will be filled by other forms of unconstitutional machinations for a military coup to happen.
“This as citizens we will not allow,” Biti said.