Shabanie Mashaba Mine (SMM) workers, who had anticipated a salary windfall two weeks ago after enduring nearly two years without regular income, are yet to get paid amid reports their employer was still conducting a payroll audit.
SMM administrator Afaras Gwaradzimba last week told NewsDay workers would only get paid after completion of the audit programme.
“We met with ZMDC (Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation) and the workers, and we agreed that Camelsa was going to carry out a payroll audit after which the workers would get paid. They had said the audit should have been completed on September 12,” said Gwaradzimba.
“I am not sure what the delay is now. I am also not sure if they have presented their audit as yet,” he said. The disgruntled workers, the majority of whom have been reduced to destitutes, said they were getting impatient.
“We are disappointed. We are reporting for duty every day ever since they called us back here, but we still haven’t been paid,” said a worker, who spoke on condition of anonymity.
The payroll audit was to facilitate payment of three months’ salaries to workers who have not been paid in over two years.
The payment is set to alleviate the plight of the 1 600 workers who have been wallowing in abject poverty since the closure of the asbestos mines almost seven years ago.
In February, SMM workers told the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Mines and Energy they had sold most of their possessions to raise money for their upkeep.
They said in some cases, minor children were forced into early marriages.