The Zimbabwean government has offered its restive civil servants a ten per cent salary increase with effect from July 1 and rescinded its decision to bar teachers from going on vacation leave, state media reported Tuesday.
The teachers who had been barred from going on vacation leave since 2016 will be paid cash in lieu of the accrued days effective from July, but in a staggered manner.
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The Herald reported that the government had also revived manpower development benefits to allow civil servants to go on study leave using their accrued vacation leave days.
Teachers had planned to go on strike starting Tuesday to press the government to review their salaries and other benefits, including the restoration of vacation leave, but chairperson of the Apex Council Cecelia Alexander said this had been put on hold.
The Apex Council is an umbrella body of civil service unions and associations.
The government had also agreed to reduce rentals on its houses to figures which are not more than the housing allowances workers get.
Nine unions, five from the education sector and four representing the rest of the civil service – on Monday met government negotiators under the National Joint Negotiating Council and resolved to first consult their membership on the offer tabled by the employer.
Alexander confirmed that the government had tabled a 10 percent increment and the unions would present the offer to their constituents for guidance.
“The employer offered this as a cost of living adjustment across the board meaning it covers allowances,” said Alexander.
“As civil servant leaders, while we see this as a positive move, we have a constituency that we lead and it means we have to go back and consult our membership on the way forward. While we consult we have also requested government to go and increase on that.”
The workers want the lowest-paid government employee to get 720 U.S. dollars, up from 253 dollars. (Xinhua/NAN)
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