Government, civil servants clash looms

TEACHERS were yesterday finally paid their December salaries, but were left disappointed after Treasury without notice deducted $50 for pension contributions setting the stage for another clash between the government and civil servants.

BY OBEY MANAYITI/ NQOBILE BHEBHE/ LUYANDUHLOBO MAKWATI

The teachers started accessing their salaries yesterday while the rest of civil servants, including nurses, are expected to be paid on January 5. They described the unilateral pension deductions as a recipe for disaster.

Priscah Mupfumira

Priscah Mupfumira

This came at a time when some of the civil servants have given until tomorrow, for the government to pay them their December salaries and bonuses, failure of which they were threatening to go on strike.

Zimbabwe Teachers’ Association chief executive officer Sifiso Ndlovu said members were now being consulted on the way forward.

“This has not given us any joy at all. Our salaries have been delayed and on top of that they have been deducted without any explanation. We are also surprised as to why will they (government) bring up the issue of pension in December,” Ndlovu said.

“This has added to the anger of educators that they are not being paid on time and on the other hand their take-home pay is being deducted. At the moment we are engaging our members so that we have their views as to the way forward.”

Asked if they would consider embarking on strike, Ndlovu said nothing was impossible judging by the anger among teachers.

“With the amount of anger we have, anything can happen especially when the government does not want to dialogue,” he said.

Teachers’ Union of Zimbabwe chief executive officer Manuel Nyawo said they would push for dialogue with the government.

“We are very much disturbed by this move. We have gathered information that the deductions have been effected ranging from $40 to about $50, but we are not sure what that is for, maybe it’s going towards pensions,” Nyawo said.

“We are surprised because it’s coming at a time when we are pleading with the government to increase our meagre salaries. It also comes at a time when we are preparing school fees for our children.”

He said the deductions were unilateral as government never consulted its workers.

In Bulawayo one of the teachers, Similo Mukarati, told Southern Eye that they felt abused by the government.

“We have been working the whole year and no such deduction has been made. At first when I received my balance through the phone I thought it was a mistake,” Mukarati said.

“I then asked some of my colleagues who have collected their payslips and they told me that there was an increase in pension deduction. What is troubling us is that why this increase in pension which they have not collected for years?”

As early as 6am there were long queues outside banking halls as thousands of teachers trooped to access their money.

Apex Council president Richard Gundane said the deduction was shocking and with the amount of anger gathering within the affected civil servants, demonstrations were likely. “We are receiving this information and as a leadership we have taken the matter up with the government to get clarity.

We want to get the formula used to calculate and the percentage they used. There is lack of clarity and as it stands now anything is quite possible,” he said. On Sunday the Rural Teachers’ Union in Zimbabwe (RTUZ) urged all workers to join an anti-government protest, warning teachers would not return to work until their bonuses are paid.

“We call upon the working class of this country to join hands and confront the anti-workers ruling party and demand bonuses for civil servants. Retrenchments and other anti-workers policies we have witnessed this year were a clear message on the need for solidarity among the working people,” RTUZ said in a statement on Sunday.

Public Service minister Priscah Mupfumira was not reachable for comment.

14 Responses to Government, civil servants clash looms

  1. zai December 30, 2015 at 6:53 am #

    We hv nt bn receiving salary increments for yrs & all we get tody is a downward salary adjustment. Have all ministers & other top chefs treated ths way too? Will e austerity measures see a reduction in e nmbr of Ministers, deputy ministers, countrywide & worldwide tours? if this will not happen then civil servants should be reimbursed their money to e last cent.

  2. Trish December 30, 2015 at 7:04 am #

    We are all cowards. Evetyone of us. Why not take to the streets and show discontent at least. South Africans would have burnt buses a long time ago

  3. mukanya December 30, 2015 at 8:30 am #

    We are not South Africans my friend unoda kupisa mabhazi ani you idiot

    • Abbie December 30, 2015 at 1:15 pm #

      What gives you the right to call someone an idiot simply because he/she doesnt agree with you? The civilised way is simply to state your own opinion.

  4. Truth December 30, 2015 at 8:51 am #

    Kupisireyi mabus you useless piece of human excrement!

  5. Truth December 30, 2015 at 8:57 am #

    The other problem is that some of the money is being deducted to help foot Mphoko’s hotel bill at Rainbow towers. We need to hire some South Africans to come & demonstrate for us

    • Hotel Mboko December 30, 2015 at 12:23 pm #

      Mboko should reimburse the money he wasted in the hotel so treasury can pay teachers. Stupid fat thug, that Mboko moron. Dhödhéé remunhu.

  6. War Vet December 30, 2015 at 9:31 am #

    You must remember what Fay Chung said,”None but ourselves shall liberate ourselves” Not South Africans.
    Ourselves!We must now start to think of getting rid of this regime ourselves and at all costs for the benefit of our children and future generations.Enough Is Enough! Down with this Chefu Syndrome!

  7. abc December 30, 2015 at 11:20 am #

    How come the security services never complained about the pensions deductions, is it maybe coz they didnt get any deductions or what?

  8. gitsa December 30, 2015 at 11:26 am #

    Kna makatongwara siyayi Teaching mutsvage mabasa nguva ichipo. Tendai Biti akakuisirai Ka $50 panguva ye GNU ndiko kabiswa manje navaChinamasa imi hamusi kuzvionaa. Ngwarariiiiii

  9. matsa December 30, 2015 at 11:53 am #

    tichisiya basa hazviite

  10. judo December 30, 2015 at 3:07 pm #

    teachers lets just go slow this term. passive resistance its the way to go. sebenza okuhambelana lomholo wakho uzithulele zwii. parents should start looking for money for extra lessons.yiyo i zimbabwe yakhona.

  11. Motorist December 30, 2015 at 6:19 pm #

    My contribution relates to the hiked spot fines issue which may not be of your concern. Comparing our fines regime with those of other countries presupposes that our economy is equally competitive. Surely it requires no rocket scientist to observe that no ordinary Zim motorist has more than $20 hand at any given time. Our economy is down but our docile ministers seem to think that owning a car implies having a lot of money. Only our ministers have the state of art vehicles which are safe to pass through a road block. They are now anti-people elements and the policies they are unleashing are meant to bring more misery to the masses, and they seem to be deriving joy out of our suffering.

  12. Motorist December 30, 2015 at 6:20 pm #

    Comparing our fines regime with those of other countries presupposes that our economy is is equally competitive. Surely it requires no rocket scientist to observe that no ordinary Zim motorist has more than $20 hand at any given time. Our economy is down but our docile ministers seem to think that owning a car implies having a lot of money. Only our ministers have the state of art vehicles which are safe to pass through a road block. They are now anti-people elements and the policies they are unleashing are meant to bring more misery to the masses, and they seem to be deriving joy out of our suffering.

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