PDL linked pay for civil servants

Cde Gumbo

Cde Gumbo

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THE least-paid civil servant should get a salary above the Poverty Datum Line when an increment expected in January after the announcement of the National Budget is effected, the Zanu-PF Politburo resolved yesterday. The PDL — which is the consumer basket for a family of six — stands at US$540 per month and this is the benchmark civil service unions were pressing for.
Government workers are also expected to get “a token increment” before the end of the year which President Mugabe promised.

Speaking to journalists after a six-hour Politburo meeting in Harare yesterday, Zanu-PF secretary for information and publicity Cde Rugare Gumbo said the revolutionary party’s supreme decision making body had unanimously agreed that the welfare of civil servants was a top priority.

He said President Mugabe emphasised the need for Government to increase salaries in line with the PDL.
“We talked about the issues of civil servants,” said Cde Gumbo. “The Politburo resolved that no civil servant will get paid a salary which is below the poverty datum line.

“That is the position of the party, that civil servants will get paid at least above the poverty datum line. It is a very important point and the President was very forceful about it. He felt it was not good that civil servants be underpaid as has been the case in the last four years.”

Civil servants last night welcomed the Zanu-PF position, saying it would “greatly improve” their lives.
Zimbabwe Teachers Association chief executive Mr Sifiso Ndlovu said civil servants would be motivated by the new salaries.

“We would like to congratulate the political determination by Zanu-PF in resolving civil servants’ salary disputes and issues concerning their working conditions because this was a demotivating factor among our staff,” he said.

“I am sure this will remove all the barriers affecting the educational sector. We believe this will have a well negotiated outcome. We knew that the delay in resolving the salary disputes was caused by the thoroughness that Zanu-PF was giving to this issue,” he said.
Teachers Union of Zimbabwe chief executive Mr Manuel Nyawo said it was important that President Mugabe was fulfilling his election campaign message by ensuring the salary increment were effected.

“Considering that this was a resolution by the highest decision making body headed by the President, we are happy because the President had already vowed to make sure that civil servants salaries are improved,” he said.

“We welcome it with so much joy. However, we are waiting for this resolution to be put into action. We would have wanted the Government to intervene before the end of the year.”

Mr Nyawo said civil servants were confident that Zanu-PF would shame its detractors who were predicting doom when the party was actually taking the country on the right path.

Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe secretary general Mr Raymond Majongwe described the resolution as  positive.
“That is what we have all been clamouring for,” he said. “The Zanu-PF Government has shown that it is pro-people and pro-poor. This move will change the economy as it will force all other sectors to improve their salaries, but we would also encourage the Government to follow through on the other promises such as non-monetary incentives like housing.

“We are happy, motivated and encouraged by the positive, practical steps that the Politburo has taken,” he said.
The civil servants failed to get a meaningful salary increment for the past five years due to policy inconsistencies by MDC-T ministers in the then inclusive Government, many of whom despite having a trade union background, shut the door in the faces of the needy government workers.

The then Finance Minister Tendai Biti repeatedly told the civil servants that Government was broke, while the then Public Service Minister, Lucia Matibenga arrogantly evaded the workers in times of negotiations.

The lowest-paid Government worker is getting US$297, way below the PDL.
President Mugabe has indicated, on different platforms, that the new Zanu-PF Government prioritises the welfare and conditions of service for civil servants and would improve them.

Cde Gumbo said the Zimbabwe Agenda for Sustainable Socio-Economic Transformation (Zim Asset), an economic blue print expected to turn around the economy for the next five years, was discussed extensively during the Politburo meeting.

“We discussed at length Zim Asset with Finance Minister Cde Patrick Chinamasa telling us what he has done the integrated party position as far as the economic blueprint is concerned,” he said.

“He (Cde Chinamasa) talked about the need now to raise money to implement the programmes outlined in the document and that is what exactly the party asked him to do and he will do that.
“Zim Asset is divided into four clusters and all of them should be implemented. What he has to do is to have plans to raise funds to fund the projects that are enunciated in the framework.”

Government, in line with the winning Zanu-PF manifesto, recently adopted the five-year economic blueprint that sought to achieve sustainable development anchored on indigenisation and empowerment.

The economic plan envisages that the economy will grow by an average of 3,4 percent this year, 6,1 percent next year and continue on an upward growth trajectory to 9,9 percent by 2018.

Cde Gumbo said the forthcoming 14th Zanu-PF Annual National People’s Conference was also on the agenda.
He said this year’s conference, running from December 10 and 15, would be held under the theme: “Zim Asset: Growing the Economy for Empowerment and Employment”.

“All the logistics are being worked out and the Politburo will meet on the 10th of November, with the Central Committee following the next day,” he said.

The Politburo also discussed Provincial election results from the Midlands and Manicaland provinces, before refering the matter to the Central Committee for further deliberation or resolution.

Analysts said while some want Zim Asset to be about economic enablers and development of physical infrastructure like water and energy development, the Zanu-PF leadership was alive to the fact that this risked negating the human factor which is why the thrust is to balance and deal with both the bigger plan of economic enablers which takes longer and the human needs factor which is immediate.
This, they say, is the thinking behind the civil service salary resolution.

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  • grecko

    Sounds good to the ears and pockets, I hope the economy will sustain that cause, honestly we wld love to get increment but let the increment be sustainable, zvokuzotambira rutatu mari yonzi yapera, hazvikurudzirwi. Ndinodaro nekuti zvanzi mari yauya thru politiburo, politiburo are famous for their short term populist tendencies. Biti became unpopular but I think he was making sense, we eat what we kill. Hanzi zviri nani kudya musuva musuva pazuva for the whole year than kudya mukonde wose in one sitting and starve for the whole. you risk not only extreme hunger, but kushaika chaiko. Kana yauya ndoluma nevamwe but lets pray kuti team ZPF ine lasting plan

    • Bullet at Falls

      By short term and populist obviously at the back of your mind you still think of that on land reform programme handi. There is no economy that has grown in this world with suppressed demand. And demand is only spurred on by a meaningful disposable income. Ask furniture shops the effect of the crumbling of civil servants’ incomes had on their operations. the civil service is a huge chunk of this economy’s market and to have them pocket a good disposable income should obviously be good news to everyone in trade, including you, i am sure. stop this supply side economics bias nonsense and look at the market or lack of it. there is a minimum amount of demand that is requisite to move an economy ahead. lack of it you virtually kill the economy. Reason why some of us wrote a couple of years ago that the then Minister of Finance needed to demonetize and release the bank balances the banks still hold as zimdollar balances to nudge the aggregate demand for this economy. As a lawyer, he read too much between the lines akaisa zvimiti munzeve. All ZanuPf needed doing was pray that he abdicated on this and these are all tools now available to them to spur on this economy whether you call it populist or not. One problem with the Zim economy is lack of demand. i hope you differentiate between actual demand and hunger. Demand is lacking because of lack of disposable incomes. i would give a thumps up to this move. Add this to the restitution to banks, and obviously the impending demonetization.

      • Jotham

        What a sterling comment . You are a professional par excellence. If we had such people as you , Zimbabwe would be different. Some people are so addicted to partisan politics. Their judgement is based on political alliances rather than rational thinking.

      • Wakisai

        Sounds more like a scheme to keep the civil service patiently waiting another month, or two, or three………
        Note there’s a big “SHOULD” get a salary above the PDL… sometime in January, when Minister Chinamasa suddenly pulls out from his magician’s hat, a 60% increase in available fiscal budget liquidity from sustainable sources. A one-off Christmas and New Year bonus supplied by obscure funds, or God forbid more begging bowl Chinese loans, won’t satisfy anyone.
        At the moment increasing disposable income will do little to revive the remaining moribund and expensive Zimbabwean industry, people will always optimise their limited resources through purchases of cheaper imports benefiting mostly our S.A. neighbour.

      • gutu chitovah

        well thought and presented piece of infor. unoziva muvengi chete ndiye asina ndagona. upe vanhu mari yooweee hazvimbo laster, uvanyime yowee that was a gimmick to win elections uite chino yoweee zvakazodai ahh that form of thinking that level of analysis is just but detrimental to the economy. this is a good move i bet aimed at stimulating demand pull economic growth. its possible and it can happen. a good move by the revolutionary party par excellence

      • grecko

        You raised some sound points there buddy but in my view I would rally behind if the government start work on the two million plus jobs promised. A salary increase is sweet music to all of us, but it is more sustainable if it is staggered coz its better to get a 100% increment spread over 5 years because we allow the budget to accommodate other developmental programmes. For example why free education and health programs adopted by our country did not work quite well is because unemployment was going up and revenue collections going down. Right now unemployment has reached new levels of high, agricultural productions has hit low bottom, industry is at 20%-40%, gold is trading poorly, reports say Chiadzwa diamonds are dwindling in quality and quantity, corruption is rampant. The indiginisation scheme does not really show any promise to improve on employment, besides building schools and clinics (of which our concern with schools and clinics now is to improve the quality of those already available, not necessarily have buildings offering littl).The only positive side is Min Walter Mzembi is trying his best to revive tourism industry. So id I get a 10% increment and all these facets are being revived in a practical manner, i will be the happiest man coz I will be assured that my children, their children and those that come after them will inherit a better Zim.

      • $21812056

        Demand for what exactly? For the demand that I can see is simply for Japanese cars, SA food and Chinese Clothing.

        What Zim needs is Cheap energy and water, that way people save the little they have rather than spend it on imported generators, drilling boreholes and buying diesel to run those generators. This will also boost industry and wheat farming significantly.
        Improved industrial performance will mean more jobs and more money in the economy.

    • Tadzoka

      True, fulfilled election promises will be welcome. However, the IMF are currently here and asking questions. Such as why recommendations by the agreed SMP economic program haven’t been followed, and why mining dividends and taxes haven’t appeared transparently in the Treasury budget? Where will funds be sourced to finance the promised ZIM asset? The SMP covered the period April-December 2013, without Minister Chinamasa capable of providing satisfactory answers or results, chances of any agreed debt relief from Bretton Woods institutions remain extremely remote.

  • Gweya

    The proof of the pudding, ladies and gents, is in the eating. Totenda dzanwa dzaswera naMangwiro.

    • Tracy

      Vana Thomas munonetsa

      • rukudzo

        yes the doubting Thomases.

  • Sangodema

    540 inokwana here for a family os six, vachirenta how much, vachidya how much, vachibhadhara nei mafees?

    • Ngwena Dziva

      Inokwana hama yangu. Kana $250 yakasesedza, kuzoti $540. Zvimwe iwe unoti horeyi wakawanda but dont svora mari dzevamwe

      • zanamari

        mmmmmmmmmmm.wangu muromo nyarara

    • joseph njanji

      tsvaka mwari first then mari later inokwana

  • Shamisika

    Already, some state-salaried enterprises were paid very late in October indicating that the govt is already walking on a tight financial rope. They have no money. Populist policies are good but should be sustainable. However, it is good because at least now I will be able to part-pay my ZESA bill before the money is swallowed by the current inflation.

    • gutu chitovah

      you need to differentiate between timing and ability. delay doesn’t mean inability they are able they will do it. we are talking here of the party that spurs growth since 1980 the same party that brought about this independence the same party led by one if not the most educated head of state in the world. a man who is quite intelligent and wiser. lets give them a chance they will do it.

      • mukuru263

        So i guess the reason things were not so good for the past 33 years is because of sanctions?

  • Mimi

    Gushungo never says what he does not deliver and that is a fact. Well done. At least the lowest paid worker will get something reasonable. Situation on the ground though seems that cash is getting hard to access at the market and this should be looked into before it gets out of control. Isn’t we have the Marange/Chiadzwa diamonds here nhai maZimbabwe? We hope the increment will also ensure that our former war veterans’ pension proceeds are increased, vanhu vari kutambura ivava.

    • Adire

      Ma War vet ndivo vanhu Vagere ivavo. Had they known kuti situation yavo is dire and will always be dire, they would thought otherwise. I believe they are all 1nd 2 farmers and are productive on the land so what is their problem? Asi vakangochengeta ivhu vasingarimi? If then toughies ndeyavo

  • Tanyanyiwa

    I’m really lost for words and i simply want to say forward for ever and backward never.

  • JB

    70% currently goes to salaries and 30% to the rest, now to imagine an increment of that size incredible ladies n gentleman mashura chaiwo.

    • Jambanja paSalisbury

      Ndicho chokwadi manje….do not understand where they will get the money from….Marange are diamonds are dwindling because they overmined by the looters and now there is nothing to redirect to the fiscus….Gore rino, vachaimba nziyo, 57 months to go

  • Tamuka Toro

    Some of us trully surprise me. If the Party says it will pay then it will pay. Why should we doubt that. Paya zvikanzi hapana mari yemaelections by we went through effortless. Iwe unoda kuenda mberi kuti hapana mari, ungaziva homwe yemumwe. Important to note here, is there is a positive undertaking by hurumende yevanhu. Zvimwe izvo will work out somehow.

  • Nyandoro

    Gore rino, iro rino gore, ishuwa here? Come Christmas tosangana paBank!!!!!!!!!!

  • VZ

    RUGARE MAHUMUNYA GUMBO

  • sambiri

    This is what we’ve been talking about all these years.Politicians should make it an obligation to discuss the welfare of civil servants. Well done Zanu Pf.

  • vhavho

    Iam very certain this is great but what will happen to the salaries of the industrial workers some who still earn 27us a week. what we know is that the Indians, Chinese, Nigerians and South Africans are now busy upping prices as we speak. Are we going to afford these increases who is going to suffer here obviously the man on the street.

  • carlton ndudu

    LETS get the linguistics or political communication for which the Herald is well known straight here…”THE least-paid civil servant should get a salary above the Poverty Datum Line when an increment expected in Januarÿ…” with the key words being SHOULD and EXPECTED. I think what civil servants should really be celebrating for now is the bonus and token increment to come, which will stay for a while as government seeks channels to raise funds that can sustain the public service wage bill. Already, government has fallen short of expected revenue collection targets and Chinamasa’s budget should produce nothing short of a (diamond) windfall to meet these expectations.

  • grinandbearit

    what a big smile, how sweet !! hehe

  • Sarudzai

    Where will the money come from, at the moment salaries take up 70% of the Budget?

  • Sarudzai

    Where will the money come from, at the moment 70% of the Budget goes to salaries.

  • Japana Hapana

    Varume vava pa tight ava. Economics chigwadzo hadxzizi politics.

  • bibi

    Is this not the same mentality and methodology which brought the prosperous Zimbabwe which was inherited at independence by the same people to its knees. Free this, free that, money just going out none coming in. This decision means they want to more than double their salary bill at a time when even profitable organisations are cost cutting. If all money coming in has to be channeled to an expense, where will we get money to develop the nation. Guys we need to look forward and not continue to look backward or even be so focused on now. They need to do a study on Esau and Jacob. Esau sold his succesfsul future to satisfy a need for today. Jacob forwent his lunch that day and gained his future.

    • Japana Hapana

      The money is there. The will simply deep their hands in the cookie jars stashed away in far away countries. I am happy this thing is happening coz it will force them to direct diamond money to treasury.

  • Sbu

    it has to be sustainable, and we appreciate money does not grow on trees. the promises are now long overdue.

    • MweniTafara

      Sbu, I think you made your comment with emotion because money really grows on trees like tomato or orange.

      Just grow a few tomato or orange trees and when the fruit is ripe go to the market and check how rich you would be but I think I have an idea of what you wanted to say.

  • george bachinche

    You are all missing the point. Gumbi is speaking as ZANU PF and not government. What this means is that ZANU PF would like thsat to happen. However Government might have another take on that. Wait to hear what the Public services Commission – the employer of civil servants has to say about it.

  • Dzutswa

    Uuuuhh!!!!! what a relief that will be. Hoping ma incentives anobva aenda, as the ordinary are being taxed twice to pay the teachers and they didn’t have an way out of this situation except for teachers getting a better pay