Farirai Machivenyika Senior Reporter
The US$175 benefit paid to civil servants through their nostro accounts has not been withdrawn.
In fact, the Government is working on several measures to improve the welfare of its workers, Service Commissions Secretary Ambassador Jonathan Wutawunashe, has said.
In a statement yesterday, Ambassador Wutawunashe said the “fake message” circulating on social media platforms, was “created and disseminated by miscreants bent on tarnishing the image of Government”.
“Contrary to the fake message, Government is committed to improving the welfare of its workers and is continuously working on measures to enhance both monetary and non-monetary benefits,” he said.
He added that the message should be discarded with the contempt it deserves.
Government awarded civil servants a 20 percent salary increment across the board backdated to January 1, with the equivalent of US$100 of this in foreign currency beginning in March.
Teachers also got school fees support, among other monetary and non-monetary benefits.
The US$100 is in addition to the US$75 Covid-19 allowance that the Government had already been paying its employees.
The improvement in the conditions of service also included an advancement award, which recognises seniority for differentiation within the same grade that would be implemented across the entire civil service, was also introduced to ensure that experienced staff in a particular grade would be paid more than the recently hired.
Besides the additions to the take-home pay of civil servants, there were significant non-monetary benefits announced which include payment of school fees of up to three biological children per teaching family with an upper limit of $20 000 per child per term to be paid directly to the school.
Government also said 34 000 housing units and 2 125 blocks of flats would be constructed over a five-year period as institutional accommodation, including critical amenities for teachers within the school premises.
Other measures that were agreed upon are the implementation of a housing loan guarantee scheme to facilitate home ownership by civil servants; the provision of a transport facility to ferry teachers in both rural and urban areas and a duty-free car import scheme.
Recently, Finance and Economic Development Minister Professor Mthuli Ncube fixed up to US$10 000 worth of vehicles that civil servants are allowed to import duty-free as part of Government’s commitment to improve conditions of service.
Prof Ncube has reiterated that the Government will improve the conditions of service for civil servants in line with the overall improvement of the economy.