CIVIL servants have demanded salaries in United States dollars following the price increases and the rejection of the bond note and electronic transfers by some shop owners and service providers.
The Zimbabwe Nurses’ Association (Zina) and the Zimbabwe Teachers’ Association (Zimta) said their salaries were too low and no longer worth much in the face of increasing commodity prices.
Zina general secretary Mr Enock Dongo said the prevailing economic environment had taken a toll on nurses.
“We demand that our salaries be paid in United States dollars since some shops are not accepting any other form of payment,” he said. “We also call on the Government to adopt flexible duties for the nurses.
“For example, nurses can work from 7am to 7pm working shifts for three days a week instead of the current 7am to 4pm for five days a week to mitigate increased transport costs.”
Mr Dongo said the cost of basic commodities, transport, accommodation and the general cost of living had risen almost three-fold in local bond notes to meet the original $US value.
“This development has impacted negatively on our membership whose salaries are sadly still pegged in local bond notes and worse still in Real Time Gross Settlement format,” said Mr Dongo.
Zimta secretary-general Mr Tapson Nganunu Sibanda said the association was piling pressure on the Government to seriously consider paying them in foreign currency, so that they were in a position to meet their daily monetary commitments.
“Having observed that we have been hardest hit by the recent monetary pronouncements and measures, we’re no longer in a position to meet our daily monetary commitments and are therefore incapacitated,” he said.
“We’re, therefore, calling for an immediate cushioning of teachers through payment of salaries in foreign currency.”
Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare Minister Dr Sekai Nzenza yesterday said Government was engaging unions and labour office to find a way forward.
“I fully understand the difficult situation of civil servants in the current economic climate,” she said. “We’re engaged with the unions and the labour office to find a way forward,” said Dr Nzenza.