$4 500 pay is peanuts, says town clerk

Mr Makunde

Mr Makunde

Lloyd Gumbo Senior Reporter
Chitungwiza Town Clerk Mr George Makunde yesterday said his $4 500 monthly salary is not a living wage after it was reduced from $10 000 following a Government directive last year.

He said the reduction of his salary brought misery to his family, adding that he was negotiating for an increment since the $4 500 was arbitrarily imposed without negotiation.

Mr Makunde made the remarks when he appeared before the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Local Government, Rural and Urban Development chaired by Mutasa South MP Cde Irene Zindi.

“My salary approved then by the Minister of Local Government was $10 000 and $2 500 was for my accommodation, but since I am staying in a council house, I never used that $2 500 because my accommodation was paid for,” said Mr Makunde.

“I was constantly on $10 000 salary all inclusive. Now the Government has come in and said reduce your salary. Now it’s at $4 500. We are still negotiating because that’s not a living salary and we would want you to understand that such a situation causes one to think twice because you are looking at an institution that’s defunct in terms of operation.”

Mr Makunde added: “I have children who are attending school elsewhere. You can imagine the burden that it brings onto a child when you are now going to tell that child, ‘My daughter or my son, we can no longer afford the fees at your school’.

“How much damage does that cause to your child? I don’t want to become emotional about it, but you are our portfolio committee. You need to have that information. It’s a bit disturbing.

“There are litigations because this thing has been done outside the framework of negotiation or collective bargaining. It is a directive, fine, but there are litigations that will follow through in terms of rationalisation.”

Mr Makunde said the local authority managed to pay more than 200 employees that it laid off using the three months’ notice last year.

He said the local authority was highly indebted due to the previous management that had an insatiable appetite for borrowing from financial institutions.

Mr Makunde expressed the council’s disgust at the failure by Government to prosecute land barons whom they reported, among them Frederick Mabamba and Bonface Manyonganise.

He said most of the land barons abused their political affiliation to make themselves appear untouchable.

He said Government stopped them from rationalising the stands, while it was conducting its investigations on the land barons.

“We sent invoices worthy about $7,1 million to Mabamba for them to make amends to their wrongdoing,” he said. “We can’t collect that money because we were told we can’t regularise those things. So, we are still awaiting an instruction so that we can proceed to regularise the stands.

“We submitted written documentation for the arrest of those land barons. I don’t have a single person who has been arrested amongst those whom we listed as land barons. The meaning of that, I wouldn’t know and I can’t tell. Possibly it’s an institution that is outside my purview.

“Like I indicated, Mabamba and Manyonganise are still walking in the streets . . . I wish something was done in order for people to be brought to book and people realise their hard-earned cash.”

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  • kazukuru

    Resign and get another job if $4500 is too little

    • Thumani

      I agree with you there.

    • Mbezo

      ngaangwarire ma 3 months uyu

  • Zimba 1

    Every employee has a contract, and salaries are a private thing between employee and employer. Not sure why Mr Town Clerk you are publicising your salary? Are the people living in midst of sewer in Chitungwiza suppose to empathise with you? Or worse still, the millions unemployed Zimbabweans suppose to feel pity for you? Given that your council is failing to deliver decent services, I actually think that you should be thankibg your ‘god’ that you still have a job because If I were your boss–the rate payer, of course–you would have lost your job a while ago.

    If you think you are being unfairly rewarded for your efforts, then go elsewhere instead of whinning and whinging about pay cuts. You are being for what you are worth!

    • Hacha Duke of Enkeldoorn

      Still at the end of the day this fellow has a point. An employment contract is binding and no party is allowed to amend it arbitrarily – especially Government which is not a party to the contract. Did it occur to you that this fellow might have had a comfortable job “elsewhere” and left it because the Town Clerk position had better conditions? Now you take away those things that attracted him and you expect him to accept that. He will sue and the Council will lose – period.

    • nxa

      Salaries of a public figure are from the public and are public. This is not a private institution

    • Teme

      Wise one, he was “appearing ….” so was required to produce that info and the reporter did his job. did you miss that?

    • thomas

      public office has known salary.

  • Tinoda Runyararo

    Ah leave that job and become a civil servant…isn’t that the freedom we all wanted! Arrogance!

  • Nyamavhuvu

    Mr .Makunde I can do the job for $3000.00

  • Chigovanyika

    Close your beak Mabharani. We will ensure its reduced to $1500 very soon. Growing fat as you are , is a sign of disrespect to Chitungwiza residents since you are not delivering anything . Uri kusimba kunge shamba renhopi haikona.

  • Muza Sibanda

    He is right. Who gave him a contract with $12 500 in the first place? That person is answerable. Wages are sticky downwards and any HR practitioner worth their salt knows that.

    • wezhira wezheve

      so because he was given a wrong contract, then the poor rate payer have to foot the bill. The town clerk is the highest administrative post in a Town council, they are the ones that set the salaries and conditions. effectively, the $12500 salary came from him, so he is answerable. the HR people were given to implement.

    • Rawboy

      There is no money!..Cutbacks are necessary….Or he gets made redundant and someone else hired.I’m sure there won’t be any shortage of takers .

  • Doris

    So where is the “elsewhere” where your children are being educated?. Join the rest of us and suffer.

    • Tarwiraushe

      The “elsewhere” refers to countries like, SA, UK,USA and many others,where our leaders are sending their kids. That’s the only conclusion,i have reached if he is saying $4,500 a month, is not enough to send his kids to school. As for the suffering,how is it possible if he is making $4,500 a month?

    • Strategic

      Elsewhere I guess means not the down graded council or govt schools!! so they run council for others

  • Magwe

    At Labour law, it is unlawful to arbitrarily reduce ones salary without mutual consent. That is the law and it is meant to protect every worker. If the law can be violated for one, it can be violated for all. The culture of respect for contracts is being obliterated by such arbitrary and capricious actions.

  • zvambu

    Resign uwone kuti panouya anoda chero $2500
    Wakarerwa naMbuya iwe wakajaidzwa. U are doing nothing as far as service delivery is concerned

  • Ray Mbada

    You were living in a different world baba but now it’s the time you face reality, that was the reason for cutting your salary. When others were crying loud about the economy you were laughing. How many Zimbabweans are earning half your salary per year? how many children have dropped out of school after their parents failed to raise fees for an ordinary and rural school and what’s special about your kids? You can’t choose to go public with an undressed statement which is only out to prove how cruel you have been to council workers who are today languishing in anger and hunger! FACE THE MUSIC THEN.

  • Mosad

    shamwari if you are not worth that much, siyana nazvo uone kuti rinomira here, apa you are getting your 4.5k on time isu vamwe we are going for months tisina kana bond unopenga

  • machakachaka

    The Chitungwiza Town Council is only there to collect money from residents, pay themselves, and then wait for the next month’s collection. So what’s the $4500 for? Cut it further to $1500.

  • mujerimani

    zero respect for civil servant suffering at the behest of thi shitty gvt..4.5 inobhadhara 9 civil servants iwe wotochema nxaaaaaa

  • Nhunguru

    Why stress if you are marketable and indispensable…

  • mpengo

    Unopenga iwe.

    Many affordable government schools with excellent pass rates.

    4,500 is relative luxury for any Zimbabwean, even in the diaspora.

    Who are you and what do you contribute in revenue that warrants such a salary?

    If you want such huge amount then public service isnt your thing, buddy.

    Go join the private sector or start your own business, then you’ll realise how tough life is. Especially where you have to earn your keep and justify such a salary.

    As a parent you’re rather irresponsible to raise them to be spoilt brats who cannot understand situations and how they have to adjust to them.

    A very bad example of a parent

    Grow up!

  • Wezhira

    I can also do that for $2500.00 plus i dont need a car.

  • Cecil Roars

    That is very interesting Mr Makumbe. In 2008 I left my post as government scientist because I could no longer afford basic things. I did what was obvious and what many people were doing then; I left for the diaspora.
    In my opinion, a salary of $4500 is way too much above average salaries in the country. You were obviously, like any other person who were paying themselves unjust salaries at the expense of the majority, living beyond your means. You perhaps have more than one wife and it is true that you were paying fees at private schools for your kids and those not known formally to your wives. Now it is the time to understand what the ordinary council workers have been going through.
    You can not threaten rate payers by crying in the manner you have done. It is time for you to adjust. Re-call your kids from private schools; get rid of your small houses; buy chicken feet and chicken livers like any one else and even sell some of the cars you acquired during the period of criminal salaries. While going through your tirade I missed somewhere about what you real do as town clerk of a town that is not functional like Chitungwiza. We do not need you; just as perhaps we do not need the government itself for now. Thank you.

  • Aristotle Lupus

    Any unilateral variation of a contract is arbitrary and an inconvenience, however, I can not sympathise with Makunde in light of the service provision in Chitungwiza.
    He is not embarrassed to admit he was receiving US$2,500 even if he was living on council property! I am appalled.
    He could have just stated that the variation of salaries has diminished the lifestyle he was now accustomed. full stop.

  • myself

    then leave that post and find somewhere u can gt what u want

  • Strategic

    Contracts and rights are only respected where there is rule of law. Forget about employment contract and Labour relations Act. Welcome to Kangaroo Republic!!

  • Disgusted

    Makunde, Makunde, Makunde. Ndakudaidza kangani? Une shuwa nezvauri kutaura? This is arrogance at its worst. I have a few tips: Adjust your lifestyle or just GO!

  • yowe

    This idiot should resign!!! Workers in Chitungwiza council were not being paid for months and this guy was taking home $12,500??? At the average salary of $300 that workers get this guy is getting paid enuff for 42 people!!! What is he doing to warrant such an exorbitant salary??? Can this government afford to pay such salaries?? Varume this is why the country is ruined these so called leaders think the are entitled to such lavish lifestyles and us the rate payers should foot the bill! NO

    • karombe

      ndanga ndashaya kuti wakanyararirei tichiudzwa this nonsense na makunde

  • Alheit-nemoyowese

    Imagine that I am getting $250 bit very much qualified like you iwe wotoramba mari yakawanda kudaro siya uone kuti hatuyi ipapo here?

  • Patriot

    A very stupid public administrator!!!!! In an economy where Govt is struggling to foot public service salaries pegged at around $300, you call $4500 peanuts. Think twice Mr Makunde or whatever you call yourself. leave that Office and give room to young Educated Patriots who struggling to get jobs because of greedy people like you. You are a bad breed Mr Clerk.

    What makes you think you so special, we all have kids and we struggle to have them educated on that $300 and I wonder what term you use to describe what we get. You are insane cause we surely did not know how much you get. What did you do to get such a hefty salary. resign if you fed up of peanuts….

  • Dungagun

    Varume nyaraiwo vamwe vashandi vekanzuru varikuwana marii uye vane mwedzi mingani vasina kutambira Mr Makunde u dnt have ur ppl at heart munotoda deliverance yakasimba $2500 accommodation per month nyaraiwo vakuru vekanzuru ????????????????????????

  • Dr. Muchena

    I understand his cry. salary cut of almost 55% isn’t easy to cope up with even if he was earning a million dollars. its true that his family are miserable. Those that were responsible for giving him 10k should at least review the cut to around 7k. pihwai mari TC.

  • herbert phiri

    sir town clerk you are a stupid man

  • munhu mutapa

    That is roughly 50 000 rands per month and this guy is staying at council house for free.The only advice I can give him is to look for another job.

  • Afrikan

    Then you say sanctions are the ones killing the economy! Cry Nehanda! Cry Kaguvi! Cry my brothers and uncles in unmarked graves in Mozambique! Nyika iya yaita mamvemve!

  • Talksure Murevi

    Enda unofa makunde

  • Zimba 1

    Haana point. He is by employed by council, not by the parliamentary committee. As such, he should be talking about this with his employer. Parliamentary committee has no authority over council salaries. That’s why they can’t fire anyone.

  • Zimba 1

    Ita mushe iwe! Since when is a town clerk a public figure? Ndekupi kwawakambovhotera public figure?

    • karombe

      iwe kana uri mu public office uri public figure. thats why he was brought before the parly committee. mahachi was once stubborn to this committee asi nhasi ndezvipi!

    • Far Que

      Iwe tikwanire mhani!
      Salaries of all civil servants are Gazetted.
      If taxpayer money funds your salary then that information is in the public domain for public consumption.

  • Ensign Tongs

    I love the arrogance though. He definitely deserves $10 000 a month with arrogance like that.

  • chinos

    This guy is arrogant and a cry baby, I would have listened to him if he had justified a higher salary for the post and not because his “needs” are not being met. $10,000 yacho yaimbokwana here. $4,500 for all town clerks whether in Harare, Chitungwiza, Gweru, Kadoma etc is not rational considering the status of the council thus the work load. Those in Harare & Bulawayo deserve better than those in Kadoma and Chegutu but for one to go before the Parliamentary committee to cry long and loud that i can no longer afford fees for my kids is absurd.

    • Teme

      Good observation, he never even said 1 thing he does that may justify higher wage. Instead talks about his needs yet that are not even part of the job description that he gets rewarded for. Looks like he does not even understand why he should be paid any amount, I wonder if he even has a clue what the job is supposed to be

  • Rawboy

    Ah! The poor fellow can no longer afford the school fees for his children…Perhaps he ought to spare a thought for those wondering where their next meal will be coming from in the not too distant future before soliciting sympathy for his predicament hey…..Meantime George Makunde,just for you……

  • chidaddy daddy Chibababababa

    This is exactly the problem with the Zimbabwean workforce. This entitlement mentality is killing parastatals, govt depts, NGOs and private companies….in fact the economy at large. You will notice that nowhere in the article are his achievements, deliverables and key result areas discussed. Instead he justifies his high salary by explaining his expenses. Who cares how much he spends on fees or accommodation? It was his choice to live that lifestyle but surely he cannot transfer the burden to the employer and ratepayer. As a nation we will not grow economically as long as we think like this. Instead a valid argument would be, before I was appointed revenue collection was X and now it is Y, costs were A and are now B, service delivery was G and is now H, I have repaired Z roads and implemented programmes PQR. If he can come up with a sound argument in this format chero $20k ngaapiwe. But to say $4.5k is peanuts asina zvaaita is really insulting and offensive to his employees and the nation at large. What percentage of the nation earns $4.5 or less??

  • Concerned Citizen

    shame on you Mr Town clerk, shame on you endai ku church munotsvaga Jesu. Hamutonyari kutaura muromo wakapusa kudaro munyika yatiri ino iyi. Zibenzi remunhu, $4500 ishoma? chinjai vana zvikoro stupid ye munhu. Ko vamuri kushandisa ku council ikoko vava ne mwedzi yakawanda vasingatambire ma salaries avo vanozoti chii, you need deliverance you stupid man, maratidza pfungwa dzenyu kuti uri dofo remunhu no wonder why Chitungwiza isiri kusimuka ndiwe dofo iwewe uri kupihwa chinzvimbo chausingaite deserve. Vanhu varikupihwa pension ye $4500 vakashanda more than 20yrs and appreciating it and you are crying fowl for the same amount inouya after 4weeks, shame on you. Siya basa racho uone kuti hapana anorida here, I am very angry with you Town clerk, ndikasangana nemi dakukurovai, vamwe vana vakushairwa fees ye 35 dollars ne vabereki vavo pa Gvt school motidadira muchitiudza zve trauma yevana venyu varikudzidza kuma pvt schools, and ndomazivana asina chaanobura iwayo, ndatsamwa mhani, mukawana nguva kwanai baba imi.

    • karombe

      ndakufarira muwonero wako. auditor general ne zimra pindai muma local authorities mugadzirise. PAYE. responsible ministries dzatadza. vane ma allowances asingaite. vana vari kupinzwa kuma private schools ne council asi service hapana

  • Telescope

    And what value are you adding Mr Town Clerk? Corruption yakakunyengedzayi. Come down to earth and smell the coffee. Show us your Balance score card and how you have performed in the past six months.

  • Concerned Citizen

    haana point mhani, ngaregedze basa racho tipinde isusu tirikunetseka

  • Kusatonyarawena!

    Its quite normal in Zimbabwe. So whats the fuss here?? Musatinyaudze hedu isu tajaira nhamo. Kana chaimboseva chava kutemura zvorwadza. Infact hamusati matanga. This also goes to everyone who enjoys the suffering of others at the expense of their lavish and selfish wants. Misodzi yevanhu muchainzwa hamusati matanga henyu zvichiri kunakidza. A well oiled machine yields better results because it perfoms better. But its not the way when it comes in Zim. You always expect to yield better from a almost dead machine. Management style is at its worst in Zim not because we hate you or feel jealous but it just shows your selfish egoistic true colors. YOU DONT CARE ABOUT NOONE. YET YOU ARE UP THERE BECAUSE OF EVERYONE. Shame on you!

  • Bvanyangu

    Uri benzi iwe. There are better qualified people who can take up that job for less. Zimbabwe is a poor country which can’t afford to pay such salaries. You have never been out of Zimbabwe you idiot.

    • Gary WekuZviyambe

      Hacha is right in terms of Labour law. An employer cannot unilaterally change the terms of a contract. Vakuru venyika is getting $12,000 per month chavari kugona chii?

  • karombe

    ngakupinde forensic audit. muchinda uyu arrogance yake haina kumira mushe

  • Humphrey

    uchitombowana hako mari iyoyo, vangani varikushaya, here is what you do, work for free, and donate that money to chinyaradzo childrens home. its service for your country

  • karombe

    are u serious coz this is no laughing matter. imari dzavana mbuya dziri kutambiswa ivo vachiswera nenzara. council is not a vprivate company my friend.

  • XG

    Tell that to the Doctors, Teachers and other Civil Servants who are also rate payers, to increase your salary from $4,500 to $10,000 a month from their $400 a month pay cheque; so that you can continue denying them service delivery.

  • silungisn

    First repair ma Potholes in your Town Ships…we will reiinstate it to $10 000…you stupid..you too arrogant..

  • rumbidzai

    unogara munyika ipi.

  • Teme

    And they should be in the PSA handbook so yes its no secret for anybody who wants to know

  • Teme

    Its was a fraudulent 10K so he should be happy he is not having to answer and defend charges and refund requests

    • Nyamavuvhu

      Yes I agree that this salary was more than he should have got.We the people have a right to transparency within the councils.Administration within the council should be good.We cannot have senior staff dictating that they get exorbitant salaries. Look at our roads in Chitungwiza.We should be getting new roads, refuse removal, improved lighting ,halls more clinics, better waste management and other amenities.Books should be audited and be available to us the public for scrutiny and viewing.We must be satisfied that the rates we are paying is going towards the improvement of Chitungwiza.We don’t want one man crying in Parliament kuti ha mari akachekwa handina mari .He is even lucky that he is getting 4500.00 per month.He should pray to his mudzimus and thank them.An appropriate salary for him would be $2000.00 per month.If he has been getting10000 for at least 2 years he should have saved at least $150000.00 at least. This is enough money to educate two children in the United States .Tell him to go to the United States and try to save that much money over there Acha bocha shamwari.He has been negligent in the handling of his funds now he wants to chema.Shamwari . So I say down with nepotism down with mismanagement. Pamberi ne demo cheka shamwari cheka ma exorbitant salaries .

  • Irritated

    who cares really? welcome t the reality of life. some people are actually losing jobs. he needs to calm down and adjust to his new income like the rest of most Zimbabweans…argh…

  • Mafira Kureva

    Johannesburg Mayor Tau takes home ZAR 1m including bonuses! That’s US $62500 pa. Compare the GDP and mere size of Joburg and Chitungwiza? US $10 000 comes to US $120 000 pa without bonuses! Then in the corridors people brag that takadzidza when basic logic can’t happen. Zvinonyadzisa we are just another DRC super rich but it has gone to the dogs.

  • Mafira Kureva

    Wake up! Better job than this where? Just Google kuti the owners of the US $ vacho how much do they earn per month?

  • chinos

    Town with no idea of how to fix sewer should earn 400

  • Msana we ngombe

    He is right. His salary of $10000 was approved by the minister and he signed his employment contract based on that salary. He budgeted for his living expenses with that figure in mind. For government to turn around and unilaterally slash his salary its setting a very bad precedent for every worker in this country. Even the lowest paid worker can have his salary slashed even after collective bargaining. One would expect such actions from the right-wing of the political spectrum and not from a supposedly left-wing government.

  • L. Makombe

    The Town Clerk is a confused and sick person who needs assistance. If God gives you $4,5k and you say that is peanuts, one needs his mind to be examined.

  • Nyasha

    Ngaasiye ndipinde ini. i can do the Job for $500 and Honda fit. He is taking people for granted. Damn mhani. Takayendawo kuChikoro.

    • theheraldonline

      A Honda Fit . . . We doubt if that car would move an inch on most of the roads in that neighborhood!

  • karombe

    salary can be slashed if it is no good for any body save for yourselfishness. after all it shld not be gvt to determine his salary but council. saka ndeimwe nyaya yatobudaka iyo. ndiko kungowawata zvisina njere

  • Shoko Ndirori

    Ngaatikwanire mukomana uyu. $12,500 salary which they fraudently awarded themselves as the Chi town bosses. Ngaapihwe $1,800 achigara imba yekanzuru! Kana asingade tsvaga kumwe kan kuendawo mudiaspora mune vamwe. Mapepa echikoro unawo iwewe kana cv yacho? Kujaidzwa uku. Zvichapera chete!

    Wakatombotaurawo kudai! –

    “Chitungwiza town clerk blames graft for town’s woes”