Gweru bows to bonus demand

Gweru City Council has reportedly given in to employees’ demands for payment of outstanding salaries and bonuses.

The two parties reached an agreement early this week following the intervention of the Ministry of Labour.

According to documents shown to NewsDay, the local authority agreed to pay outstanding workers’ salaries and bonuses before end of this month.

Part of the certificate of settlement signed by council’s acting director of finance Mike Verenga reads:

“Certification by conciliating authority certifies that the dispute between City of Gweru Workers’ Unions and City of Gweru Municipality has resolved by agreement of the parties and the terms of the agreement are as follows: (1) That employer pay all November salaries on or before the December 7. (2) That employer pays all bonuses for employees on or before the 20th of December.”

Last week council employees downed tools and camped at the civic centre demanding their November salaries and bonuses.

Kudakwashe Munengiwa, secretary-general of the Zimbabwe Urban Council Workers’ Union said: “We agreed to the certificate of settlement as a compromise, but at least we are happy that our members now know when they are going to be paid rather than the council’s position where they could not even propose a date they could pay workers and also pay the bonuses.”

However, deputy mayor Taurai Demo said although the local authority had given in to the workers’ demands it might not be able to fulfil them considering its cash flow problems.

“We sat as the finance committee and the truth is that we cannot meet the agreement,” said Demo.

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