By Staff Reporter
GOVERNMENT has taken over from the central bank the burden of paying ex-Ziscosteel workers salary arrears which run into millions of dollars.
This was revealed by Ziscosteel CEO Alosi Gowo recently while giving oral evidence before parliament’s industry and commerce committee chaired by Zanu PF legislator Joshua Sacco.
Gowo said the ex-workers last received their dues four months ago and government was working on the modalities of resuming salary disbursements.
“The ex-workers last received their payouts towards the payment of their salary arrears four months ago,” said Gowo.
“The reason for the turn of events we were told was that government is working on regularising the disbursements of the salaries.”
Late 2017, the former workers started receiving part of the $38 million windfall availed by government as part of the outstanding salaries backdated to 2009.
The award was won through a lawyer after the Sheriff of the High Court had moved in to attach the company’s vehicles, machinery and other movable property.
The payouts were being distributed directly from the Central Bank, a situation which is going to change as Treasury will start to handle the funds.
“Previously the funds were disbursed to the company directly from the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, however a new mechanism we were told is going to be put in place where the ministry of finance will be handling the payouts.
“We were told to present a list of the ex-workers to our parent Ministry of Industry and Commerce and also the Ministry of Finance,” he said.
Meanwhile, it has been gathered that treasury has exhausted the $38 million disbursed to ex-Ziscosteel employees before the completion of settling of the salary arrears.
It has also emerged that, “undeserving members” bloated the wage bill which is understood to have run into $56 million against the $38, 2 million awarded to the ex-workers by government.
“It has been gathered that RBZ paid around $56 million towards Zisco salaries backlogs which means the $38, 2 millions on award was cleared and over paid,” sources said.