Air Zim workers strike

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Over 100 Air Zimbabwe employees yesterday demonstrated at the Harare International Airport after the national airline management reportedly failed for the umpteenth time to give them a date they would be paid.

The national carrier owes its workers $5,6 million in unpaid salaries for nearly seven months.
The striking workers said over 1 400 of them were now struggling to make ends meet.

Brandishing placards with messages like “7 months no pay, people are dying like flies at Air Zimbabwe” and “Management enjoying all benefits at the expense of workers”, the employees said they were determined to get their dues.

“We are coming to work, but we are not getting any cent (while) the managers are getting their salaries,” said one of the demonstrators who requested anonymity.

“The demonstration started at 8am and up to now management has not addressed us or even to explain what has happened with our salaries.”

For the past two years, Air Zimbabwe has retrenched up to 1 400 workers owing to a liquidity crunch that has affected its operations, but has reportedly kept them on the payroll.

Another female employee said she had served the national airline for the past 30 years, and was hurt to receive such treatment.

“We have been promised they were going to buy us out, but up to now they have done nothing. Over the years they have been making decisions and none have benefited us,” she said.

The employees were demanding they either be paid their dues or get retrenched.

“Air Zimbabwe should find a way to pay us our dues. We are not refusing to get retrenched, but we want our packages. As workers we have rights,” said another demonstrator.

Strenuous efforts to get a comment from the airline’s acting chief executive officer Innocent Mavhunga were unsuccessful as his mobile phone went unanswered up to the time of going to Press.