The government has said the US$75 COVID-19 relief allowance for civil servants and US$30 for retired civil servants is a provisional measure to ease the anguish on its employees and pensioners who are confronted with exorbitant prices in shops.
The government said that it had noted the effects of the unjustified price increases caused by the country’s detractors, elite opportunists and malcontents who are pushing a nefarious agenda to cause regime change.
The Secretary for the Public, Defence, Police and Prisons and Recreational Service Commissions Jonathan Wutawunashe had this to say:
The rationale of that Covid-19 allowance is the anguish that has been reported by civil servants; it is the challenge that people are facing at the point of sale.
So supporting livelihoods at the point of sale is the purpose of that cushion of US$75. However, the US$75 is not going to be in my hand, it is going to be in a Nostro account. It will be issued with a card that one can swipe at the point of sale.
Every civil servant is requested to open a Nostro account and arrangements will be made, and I am sure proper communication will be made to the banks to facilitate the opening of the Nostro accounts.
We are going to work out the details with all stakeholders to ensure that there is soft landing to ensure the intention of the allowance is not lost because it is a cushion, it is a relief measure that is supposed to address the livelihood requirements of civil servants and their families.
Wutawunashe said the awarding the COVID-19 allowance does not shut the door on further negotiations between the Government and its workers.