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Govt workers fight US$ NSSA deductions

Local News
The Treasury granted the National Social Security Authority (NSSA) the right to deduct payments in US dollars.

THE Zimbabwe Confederation of Public Sector Trade Unions (ZCPSTU) has petitioned the Public Service Commission (PSC) to halt the anticipated United States dollar salary deductions to allow for debate to be discussed at the National Joint Negotiation Committee (NJNC) with the objective of linking it to a salary revision.

The Treasury granted the National Social Security Authority (NSSA) the right to deduct payments in US dollars.

However, trade unions representing public service workers denounced the government’s proposal.

In a letter dated June 10, 2024 addressed to the Public Service Commission, ZCPSTU president Cecilia Alexander said the deductions had come at a time when they were still negotiating for a salary review.

“In the light of the above, ZCPSTU would like to propose that the mooted deduction be stalled to allow for dialogue at the NJNC, with a view to link it to a salary review.

“The deductions come at a time when we have been waiting for government negotiators to come back to the (NJNC) with an answer to our request for a salary review and this in light of the unconcluded last quarter negotiations,” Alexander said.

She said backdating deductions to January would significantly reduce workers’ disposable income, exacerbating an already dire situation

“For the rest of the civil service, the US$ salary is all they have as their ZiG component has been wiped away by inflation,” she said.

Alexander said the decision to grant NSSA permission to deduct the foreign currency earnings should have been enforced after consultations.

“In the light of this development, the ZCPSTU wishes to raise the following reactions: It is our legitimate expectation that a decision of such import should have necessitated prior consultation between us, especially given our stated commitment to dialogue on all matters of labour,” she said.

According to a circular dated May 28 this year, PSC secretary Tsitsi Choruma said the US dollar deductions were in line with Statutory Instrument (SI) 169 of 2021 and would be backdated to January.

Civil servants are opposing the government’s move to implement US dollar deductions, claiming it will further impoverish them and wipe out their earnings.

Government workers are paid in both US dollars and ZiG, and the new regulation requires that government employees use the same ratio when making contributions.


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