THE MDC-T proposes to increase civil servants’ salaries to match their counterparts in the private sector in an effort to retain qualified personnel once it takes full control of the levers of power in government.
Report by Dumisani Sibanda
In its policy document titled The Agenda for Real Transformation unveiled at the weekend, the party said it would go beyond harmonising labour policies and look into the remuneration policies for the civil service.
The MDC-T morphed out of the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions where its leader Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai was secretary-general.
The bulk of the 200 000 civil service earns salaries below the poverty datum line estimated at close to $600 per month.
“The fundamental principle to be followed is that civil servants should be able to earn salaries that compete with those in the private sector, taking into account the difference in operating conditions in the two sectors,” read part of the policy document.
“To achieve this, the State will facilitate a national survey of working conditions for all employees in all sectors and then employ a rough guideline to adjust salaries in the civil service to bring them into line with market conditions. This exercise will be conducted annually.”
In January this year, civil servants got a salary adjustment of 5,5% .
Under its wages and salaries policy, the MDC-T said it would deal broadly with the matter across all sectors of the economy, working through the system of employment councils.
It said there shall be fixed minimum wages for each sector that shall be observed by all employers.
The party said it was also concerned with the huge gap in salaries between the shopfloor workers and senior managers.
It is understood that some executives in the private sector earn about $20 000 a month while the least paid worker gets as little as $200.
To address the disparity, the MDC-T proposed that all companies should disclose the salaries and working conditions of senior management and report these to the National Statistical Services on an annual basis.
Addressing a rally at Zimbabwe Grounds on Sunday, Tsvangirai said the MDC-T had not forgotten workers, adding the party wanted “strong and robust trade unions able to articulate the worker’s position with a strong voice that cannot be ignored by government instead of expecting to be pampered by government”.