The Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions on Tuesday dismissed the government’s offer of a “cushioning allowance”, and characterised it as “modern-day slavery”.
In an interview with Zim Morning Post, ZCTU president, Peter Mutasa said that workers want a living wage, and not a “cushioning allowance”, a term that does not exist in the labour vocabulary.
Mutasa warned that the union will mobilise its members for industrial action in the coming days. He said:
We are not accepting modern-day slavery, industrial action is a solution starting from July 22 we will have a two day stay away and if we are not heard we will take it to the next stage.
Mthuli Ncube is a hypocrite, he acknowledges that he is not giving workers a living wage but hides with a cushion allowance which is not sustainable and not legal and unsustainable, this is what we call modern-day slavery.
… We have been saying this for some time now, we want a living wage for every worker either a US dollar or equivalent rate salary for every employee has not been listening, therefore, we are now going for industrial action.
On Monday, Finance and Economic Development Minister, Mthuli Ncube, promised civil servants a cushioning allowance and urged the private sector to follow suit. He said then:
We are going to make an announcement in terms of a cushioning allowance in the next weeks and industries may you to follow the suit and look after your employees.
We realized companies have been making these profits and we have been taking care of our shareholders but leaving out our employees.