Bleak Christmas for NRZ workers

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Senior National Railways of Zimbabwe (NRZ) workers yesterday complained that they were likely to go to the Christmas holiday without getting their salaries.

The workers said on Tuesday management said the struggling parastatal had no money to pay salaries dating back to October.

Norman Simba, the Railway Association of Enginemen president said only low-level staff had been paid October salaries.

“They still owe us salaries for October,” he said. “Management has been quiet on the issue for so long and only on Tuesday they told us they have no money to pay us before Christmas.”

He said the affected workers were planning a demonstration against management to express their anger at the treatment.

NRZ spokesperson Fanuel Masikati confirmed that the parastatal was still paying October salaries and had so far only paid low-level staff.
But he said management was trying its best to ensure all workers went to the holidays after getting salaries for October.

“We are really trying to make sure all the employees get their October salaries before they go on holiday,” Masikati said.

“I know those who are complaining are upper grades and it is possible that by end of day today (yesterday) their salaries will reflect in their bank accounts.”

In September, NRZ workers went on a week-long strike protesting against the alleged violation of collective bargaining agreements and delayed salaries.

The dispute was referred to the Labour Court and the case is still to be resolved.