Legislator slams ZANU PF for intimidating civil servants

Senior MDC-T legislator Paurina Mpariwa

By Nomalanga Moyo
SW Radio Africa
10 January 2014

Senior MDC-T legislator Paurina Mpariwa has accused ZANU PF of hiding behind the law to violate the rights of civil servants, who are threatening to strike over a delayed pay rise.

In the run-up to last year’s elections, senior ZANU PF officials including President Robert Mugabe himself pledged to increase civil service wages and to improve working conditions.

Zimbabwe’s ordinary civil servants are the worst paid in the region, with most of them on an average monthly wage of $300 – well below the poverty threshold of $600.

It’s now almost six months since the party assumed power. But despite efforts by civil servants’ unions to engage their employer over the issue, there is nothing to indicate that the government has the appetite to honour its promises.

Restive civil servants have threatened industrial action starting next week when schools open. Labour Minister Nicholas Goche warned that any such move should be done according to the labour law, and that he should be notified first.

But Shadow Labour Minister Mpariwa says it is every worker’s constitutional right to engage in industrial action and Goche should be bargaining rather than issuing threats.

“The new constitution enshrines and articulates these rights more clearly than the Labour Act that Goche is referring to,” Mpariwa told SW Radio Africa Friday.

Mpariwa accused the ZANU PF government of delaying the process of aligning old laws with the new constitution to serve its own ends.

“The Public Service Act is still being used to manage the civil service and is preventing workers from enjoying their full constitutional rights, including the right to collective bargaining and to legitimate industrial action.”

“If old laws remain unaligned to the new charter, even current salary negotiations between the unions and government will continue to be just a talk-shop, and that is why Goche can afford to threaten and intimidate workers,” Mpariwa added.

She said her party wants ZANU PF to pay workers decent salaries that are pegged in line with the poverty datum line, and to do so on time.

The MDC-T official accused ZANU PF of a lack of concern for the welfare of workers, adding that the ruling party’s hostile policies were to blame for the collapse of industry in the country, which had rendered millions jobless.

“It is worrying that many companies are slipping into liquidation, voluntary or judicial management, throwing thousands out of the job market because ZANU PF has killed both the formal and informal sectors of the economy.

“Over 300 companies have been liquidated in recent months while 149 companies have filed for liquidation at the High Court and over 300 workers are being retrenched on a weekly basis. And this is just the tip of the iceberg.”

“It is clear that while they succeeded in rigging the July 31st election, they are failing to rig the economy,” Mpariwa added – Read the MP’s full statement here.

On Wednesday, minister Goche told the State media that public servants will receive salary increments backdated to January this year once negotiations have been completed.

“They will get their increments backdated to January. Government has written to the staff associations to call for a meeting where it will respond to their proposals,” Goche told the Herald newspaper.

However, in an interview with SW Radio Africa Wednesday union leader Takavafira Zhou said the government had so far shown no commitment to resolve the wage dispute – see here.

See also: http://www.swradioafrica.com/2013/12/24/no-breakthrough-in-civil-servants-pay-talks/


8 Responsesto “Legislator slams ZANU PF for intimidating civil servants”

  1. Yepec says:

    Six months after winning the, so called, elections. Zanu PF, yet to align the laws of the country to the new Constitution. Infact, the country is illegally operating under the Lancaster House Constitution and so is the Labour Act to which the Minister is referring compared to the workers rights enshrined in the new Constitution. Therefore, as is well known, this illegitimate and illegal government is unconstitutional and using illegal laws, to suppress the rights of the workers.

  2. Chimbwido Warvet says:

    Civil servants do not creat wealth. It is the captains of industry and commerce that create wealth. If there is stagnation of economic growth as what appears to be the case of the entire world and Zimbabwe in particular, it highly irrational and unreasonable for civil servants to call for increased salaries. Politicians can say anything to increase their chances of winning an election but they don’t create wealth as well. They are capable of telling the nation that our economy is the fastest growing economy in the world when the opposite is true. They can tell the nation during their political campaigns to occupy the highest office in the country that upon occupying that position they close the Guantanamo base, bring all soldiers from Afghanistan and Iraq when the opposite will be true. They can tell the nation that weapons of mass destruction that could wipe the world in seconds when the opposite is true. Nobody in his/her full faculties should believe anything said by any politician. It does not matter whether the politician is from the so-called first world or the dark continent of Africa because their mannerisms, acts and behaviour are the same.

    • Yepec says:

      In case you want to explain yourself, you have the preference of doing so (first shot, as it were, from the horse’s mouth). What is the meaning of these phrases or statements in connection with the 31 July 2013 elections and Zanu PF?
      (i) “Politicians can say anything to increase their chances of winning an election”,
      (ii) “Civil servants do not create wealth, it is the captains of industry and commerce that create wealth”,

      (iii) “If there is stagnation of economic growth as what appears to be the case …and Zimbabwe in particular, it is highly irrational and unreasonable for civil servants to call for increased salaries”. Zanu PF, the War Veterans and Apex have all along been saying that Biti does not want to raise the salaries of the civil servants.

      The above items are a testimony to the propaganda contradictions of the Border Gezi, Institute Curriculum.. Does one doubt the calibre of the members of that Party and why, Robert Mugabe, a 90 year old person, is the life President of Zanu PF?

      • Chimbwido Warvet says:

        You know what I told you to do. In case you have already forgotten, Wilbert Mukori is your first point of reference. Only when he fails to deal with you, will I be involved. Get this in your greasy head and stop asking me silly questions.

        • Yepec says:

          If you have not yet read it, here are my questions, together with my position in connection with the escape valve you thought you have created for yourself.
          (i) First, tell the readers as to what is your relationship to Wilbert Mukori such that i have to go to him first for your contradictions?
          (ii) Secondly, if you did not want to be responsible for these contradictions,why did you put them in under this Article as a comment?
          (iii) From the above comments, it follows that Wilbert Mukori is knowledgeable to your sayings which are nothing but propaganda giggles that one gets on ZBC TV.

          However, let me say it for the last timet that “You do not own me and, therefore, cannot refer or delegate me to Wilbert Mukori”.

          • Chimbwido Warvet says:

            Well, it is only because Wilbert has the patience of grandmother in dealing with fools like you. I tried to educate you but I must admit that I failed because you are thick headed. You can not write clearly. Every sentence you write is a mumbojumbo that makes me want to throw up. In addition, the questions you pose are so irrational and foolish. I can not stand it but with the patience Wilbert has displayed over the years when responding to your queries, I sure he can handle it.

          • Yepec says:

            It used to be that when confronted with your own contradictions, you resorted to profanities and expletives. Now that you were forced to accept the forum’s standards, you have latched onto Wilbert Mukori, as your sidekick.

            The real question is, when will it ever dawn on your neanderthal brain that you do not understand the issues raised in the Articles and, therefore, commenting on them? This is not for the Border Gezi Institute of Propaganda graduates

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