Bongani Ndlovu, Chronicle Reporter
GOVERNMENT negotiators yesterday requested for time to consult their principals before reconvening for further salary negotiations with civil servants.
The parties held a National Joint Negotiating Committee (NJNC) meeting to deliberate on the welfare of Government workers.
Government has already indicated that it will pay civil servants Covid-19 allowances in foreign currency.
They will receive a US$75 monthly Covid-19 risk allowance in cash while pensioners will also get their US$30 allowances. This follows Government’s payment of bonuses in US dollars last year.
In a statement, Apex Council president Mrs Cecilia Alexander said:
“The much-awaited NJNC first meeting of 2022 finally took place today (yesterday).
The meeting which happened against the backdrop of Government having pledged to pay the US$75 Covid-19 allowance in hard currency saw the workers request that Government concede to their long-standing demand to pay their salaries in USD.
In light of the above, the Government team appreciated the workers’ reasons for sticking to their position of a non-inflationary and sustainable solution to the salary circus, upon which they asked for time out to consult with their principals.
It was also agreed that this was an urgent matter and that the NJNC reconvenes in the shortest time possible.”
Last month, civil servants said they were hopeful Government would accede to their request for salaries to be paid in foreign currency, as the country starts a new year to improve their standards of living.
They said the payment of bonuses in foreign currency had given them hope for a better 2022.