Harare City Council offers cushioning allowance to workers

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By Idah Mhetu

THE Harare City Council has offered its workforce a six percent cost of living adjustment (COLA) and a hardship allowance amounting to ZWL$125,00 per employee.

This was revealed to the media Wednesday by Human Resources and General Purpose Committee chairperson Jacob Mafume.

Mafume said the hardship allowance is meant to cushion its employees from the current harsh economic environment pending conclusion of negotiations for 2019 COLA.

“Following the joint HRGPC/Finance Committee meeting, Council resolved to honour the arbitral awards by paying the 6 percent COLA for 2018 and ZWL$125,00 Hardship Allowance in line with the outcome of the arbitral awards,” said Mafume.

“The Hardship Allowance negotiations were also conducted on the premises of the current economic hardships that are being experienced by City of Harare employees and the nation in general.

“In particular, the Hardship Allowance is an interim measure meant to cushion employees from the current harsh economic environment pending conclusion of negotiations for 2019 COLA,” he added.

Recently, the Harare Municipal workers Union has been accusing its employer of abusing employees.

The workers have also been demanding a salary increment to cushion them from runaway price increases.

Said Mafume, “It is crucial to note that the $125, 00 Hardship Allowance translates to a 56 percent increment on basic salary for the least paid employee and the allowance shall cut across all the CBA-Graded employees on a sliding scale which will see the highest graded employee receiving seven percent increment on basic salary.”

Harare City Council is now in the process of coming up with a supplementary budget to meet its expenditure under the prevailing economic environment.

In his address, Mafume further said council was also set to review all market tariffs and has also come up with strategies to boost revenue collection and to eliminate barons.

“Council has come up with a number of strategies to boost revenue collection and eliminate space barons who have been pocketing big at the expense of the local authority especially in the markets sector.

“The city is computerising all revenue collection systems to curb leakages.

“It will also review all markets tariffs, conduct weekly blitz enforcing on payments and regular raids by enforcement team on illegal traders,” he said.