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‘Election season has started’: Civil servants to get bonuses in USD$

By Nyashadzashe Ndoro | Nehanda  Politics |

President Emmerson Mnangagwa has resolved to pay civil servants their bonuses in foreign currency up to a maximum of US$700 and civil service pensioners will receive payments of US$100 plus an extra US$80 for spouses amid the need to appease the electorate ahead of the 2023 elections.

Jonathan Moyo and Emmerson Mnangagwa
Jonathan Moyo and Emmerson Mnangagwa

The Finance Ministry’s Permanent Secretary George Guvamatanga on Thursday said Mnangagwa directed the treasury to do a once-off cushion following challenges experienced this year due to exchange rate fluctuations.

“This year Civil Servants will be paid their bonuses in Forex up to a maximum of US$700. Civil Service pensioners will receive their bonus payments of US$100 plus a bonus payment of US$80 for spouses after President Mnangagwa decided a once off cushion,” Guvamatanga said.

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But former cabinet minister Jonathan Moyo said it was a plan by the Zanu PF leader to try and appease civil servants so that they vote for him come elections.

He added that the offer, however, was not enough for the uniformed forces whom he said were living in extreme abject poverty.

“BONUS TIME IN US DOLLARS. The election season has started in earnest, as @MthuliNcube and @GGuvamatanga throw away their algorithms. But missing here are the security services, they need much more than a 13th cheque; life has become nasty and brutish in the barracks and camps!,” he said.

Finance ministry permanent secretary George Guvamatanga during an appearance on In Conversation with Trevor
Finance ministry permanent secretary George Guvamatanga during an appearance on In Conversation with Trevor

A letter signed by Guvamatanga dated November 4 said over the years, payment of the 13th cheque had been on pensionable emoluments (basic salary, housing and transport allowances).

“Guided by the developments in the market and taking into account the plight of workers and the need to cushion members from the adverse effects of fluctuations in exchange rates and also taking into account the proactive initiative by Government, Treasury advises that the 2021 13th cheque be paid in foreign currency (US dollars) at 100 percent of the pensionable emoluments, capped at a maximum of US$700 while those with pay scales exceeding the balance of the 13th cheque will be payable in local currency.

“In light of the foregoing, it is recommended that pensioners be equally cushioned on the basis of the following flat, once-off amount per each category: own right US$100, spouse US$80, child US$60,” Guvamatanga wrote. Nehanda Radio