Ex-RBZ employees’ plight worsens

SOFIA Machadu (not real name) is a bitter woman.

Report by Phillip Chidavaenzi

Following her retrenchment from the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) towards the end of 2009, she has had to endure the shame of a life downgrade.

Machadu — together with other central bank retrenchees — have been fighting to have the RBZ release their outstanding severance packages running into several thousands of dollars.

A mother of three, who is also looking after her elderly parents, Machadu nearly breaks down as she speaks of the agony she has gone through as her former employer shifted goalposts with regard to the outstanding payments.

“The court system is not working,” she says in a thinly veiled attack of the country’s justice delivery system to which she and her colleagues had turned to for respite.

But with their frail powers in a world where money often pulls the levers of power, they have not been able to take on the behemoth that is the central bank.

Machadu worked for the bank for three decades in which she saw four governors — Desmond Crough, Kombo Moyana, Leonard Tsumba and Gideon Gono—hold the reins.

As her finances dried up and  with her former employer playing hide-and-seek over her package, she was forced to relocate to Hatfield, a much cheaper residential area.

“I had to sell my house in Eastlea. Now I am living in Hatfield. My mother is not well, too,” she says on the verge of tears.

It is heart-breaking, she says, that the bank’s board members, who are paid thousands in sitting allowances, have thrown their weight behind Gono who has indicated the bank was struggling to pay them because the central bank coffers are near-empty.

“We are in a difficult situation,” she says. “We are no longer on medical aid on the one hand and on the other, we have no money.”
Machadu says she did not have hard feelings concerning her lay off as it had paved way for new blood, but she just wanted her dues to invest in an income-generating project.

“I have three children and one of them is at Eaglesvale. But with our situation now, I don’t think we can keep him at that school,” she says.

“But the problem now is that we can’t get a transfer letter because there are outstanding fees.”

Her mother, she says, is a chronic diabetic patient and she is responsible for her treatment.

Another ex-employee of the bank, who preferred anonymity, says it has become a struggle to settle utility and medical bills.

Two of his children, who are twins, are doing O-Levels and he can no longer pay their fees.

Since they are in an examination class, he is not able to transfer them to a cheaper school.

He has to pay $2070 fees per term for each one. Another child, who is still in primary school, needs $732 a term.

“Our outstanding packages have been coming in batches of
$1 000. But how do you distribute that money to cover all your financial obligations?”

“But if you are given all your money, you can do a lot with it,” he said. The circumstances reflect the hardships rentrenched RBZ employees are going though.

Arthur Chipato, the vice-chairperson of the 2012 retrenchees, said according to the payment plan they agreed with the bank’s management, they were supposed to get $5 000 by January 31, 2011, which they were paid, and the outstanding balance would have been paid by March 2011.

Chipato says the 1 546 retrenchees have suffered so much that one of them committed suicide.

Gono at the weekend told journalists that: “The plight of former workers is a sad one, but the bank is powerless as it does not have resources to pay.

“Those who remained have not been paid to the period up to the time that former workers left.”

14 Comments

  1. Gono let days pass fast so tht u go when ur term ends in November 2013, u have wrecked the ex-employees lives the same way u wrecked the economy. A bloody wrecker!

    1. Th Governor had to take temporary measures and the employees were supposed to know that it was temporary employment. They were too highly paid and normal employees were supposed to smell a rate. The governor helped them during tough times. Mirirai panowanikwa mari muchapiwa chete. Zvinhu zvirikunetsa kwese kwese. Maybe pachadzoka ma Zim dollars.

  2. Dzidzawokuverenga

    asi makamboitawo mari mazuva enyu, vamwe they invested and you were caught unawares, sorry sister, hope if you try going through the office of the Head of State, the better

  3. ummmm vakambodyawo vanhu ava, 2070 per term , isu vedu vachidzidza kuzvikoro zvisina basa tichitadza kubhadhara even 70 dollars term, hey vamwe vakambogarikawo akomana. life will never be the same . chimboonaiwo nhamo yacho

  4. Anti-Air (14MM AAG) Platoon Commander

    Why crying now my sis, hamuna kuita musoro here nehuori hwamaiita nemakutukutu amaipiwa naGono, ko yakazoperawo saka okupei, ini ndakapihwa generator, tractor, magejo etc and am now a fully fledged farmer iwe what did you do nemazimari amaipanana paya????????????????

  5. Makambogarawo mushe tichikwangwaya. Nhasi ndezveduwo, kare haagari ari kare. Ndiyo nhamo yataimboonawo. Bvisa vana pachikoro chausisagoni kubhadhara coz property ichatorwa voda mari yavo.

  6. They should count theselves lucky that at least they got something. Many were retrenched elsewhere and they got nothing at all because of the games RBZ was playing.

    But why send your child to a school at $2070.00 a term? Zvakapera chiraramaiwo sezvirikuita vamwe vese munyika.

    1. 2070 is someone’s annual salary and that someone also have children going to school..what exactly were these guys doing for the bank to command such astronomical benefits on top of salaries. That said, if this was the agreement, they should be paid.

  7. rbz staff used to be kings/queens during their days. okungapheliyo kuyahlola, zobohla mnyosi!

  8. Havasati vatambura kusvika pa level yeruzhinji. They should stop whinning like spoilt kids and tighten their belts like everyone else.WE WELCOME THEM TO THE REALITY THAT IS ZIMBABWE.

  9. That is black rule for you – very excruciating it is, black rule. When you used to get electricity there’s no longer electricity. Ditto water. Ditto pay.

  10. Kwatabva kure nenhamo imi muchipana Mari hezvo nhasi mochema! Isu tatotindivara nenhamo zvekuti tikavana Mari dzamuri kutaura idzodzo tingasafe zvedu nestress. iZimbabwe kana vamwe vachitaura munoti vanonyepa.. Hokoyo nenhamo

  11. Nobody is going to be employed for ever. find somethig to sustain you after employment.

  12. I like,hanzi she had tu move tu Hatfield kuricheaper.nxa.achiri ryt uyu coz Hatfield itoriwo dale dale kune vamwe.musiyeyi zvake achauya kwedu kumfakose tinomuendesa kuMagandaga

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