Zim Civil Servants Take Salary Dispute To Tsvangirai

Tendai Chikowore, the chairperson of the Apex Council, wrote to Tsvangirai last Tuesday requesting for his intervention in the civil service salary review.

Radio VOP was on Wednesday shown the letter dated 31 January, 2012, also copied to Lucia Matibenga, the Minister of Public Service, M. Nzuwah, the chairperson of the Public Service Commission, N. Sambureni, the chairperson of the NJNC, P. Mpazirihwo, the government team leader and the APEX member unions.

“We, the Civil Service Apex Council, are writing to you because we are convinced that it is the current government’s policy to restore social service delivery in Zimbabwe to optimum levels,” wrote Chikowore.

“We are convinced that you deeply appreciate and embrace the observation that, the country’s civil service carries the prime responsibility of delivering such services and as such deserves
improved salaries and conditions of service. It is with the above conviction that we request your office and indeed higher offices above yours to intervene in finding a lasting solution on the subject of conditions of service, particularly the salary levels of civil servants. This subject requires commitment and undivided attention of all Principal Officers of the Government of National Unity (GNU,” she added.

Chikowore, who is also the president of the Zimbabwe Teachers Association (ZIMTA), said the three principals in the GNU should “put aside political calculations and pressures, and to make commitments that transcended the life of the coalition government and election cycle.”

The civil servants want the least paid government employee to be paid a monthly minimum salary of US$538 for the least paid civil servant from the current US$250.

“While we agree that the national budget is a moral document in so far as it reflects the values and decisions of the nation, budgets become morally meaningless when they keep other citizens in poverty longer than others. Right now we feel morally failed by our government. Thus we suggest that you (PM) support the civil servants by proposing and defending substantive revision of our salaries. It is our belief that you would like to hear voices of those faithful workers of government and as such, we request a meeting with you at your earliest possible time,” Chikowore added.