Zimbabwe News and Internet Radio

Unpaid council workers cry foul

By Yeukai Karengezeka

Chitungwiza workers have voiced concern over their employer’s failure to clear salary arrears dating back to April 2017 and to pay them on time.

Chitungwiza council public relations officer Mr Lovemore Meya
Chitungwiza council public relations officer Mr Lovemore Meya

In an interview, Zimbabwe Rural Urban Workers Union for Chitungwiza vice chairperson Mr Tawanda Nyikadzino told The Herald that the municipality last paid workers two months ago.

“It’s a very sad situation for most of the workers at Chitungwiza Municipality who have gone for the past two months without receiving their dues,” he said.

“Unfortunately, the situation is even worsened by the fact that the local authority has a backlog of salary arrears since April last  year.”

Mr Nyikadzino urged council to prioritise the welfare of the workers and clear the arrears, a situation which has affected service delivery.

“When a worker does not get his or her dues it also means that service delivery gets compromised and we plead with the employer to urgently address this matter as workers are unhappy,” he said.

“If council is not careful, workers may end up taking the legal route to have their grievances  addressed.”

Chitungwiza council public relations officer Mr Lovemore Meya said the issue was being addressed.

“Yes, it is true that we owe salary arrears dating back to last year and we also acknowledge that workers last received salaries in May and we are working on it,” he said.

“We have since finished paying those in Grade six and we are now paying workers in Grade eight.”

Mr Meya said the situation was quite unfortunate as the council was being hamstrung by the huge debt it is owed by residents, which is in excess of $60 million.

“The major reason why we are struggling to pay workers is because our residents owe us over $60 million,” he said.

“Our revenue collection is very low, so that is the reason why we are failing to pay salaries on time.”

The cash-strapped local authority was also struggling to offer proper services to its residents due to the same financial challenges. The Herald.