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Civil servants seek bank charges exemption

Civil servants have asked Government to engage banks so that they are exempt from paying account maintenance charges to enable them to get their bonuses in full.

Civil servants will this year be paid their bonuses in foreign currency up to a maximum of US$700 and those eligible for more will get the balance in local currency.

Pensioners who were in the civil service will also receive US$100 while spouses are eligible for US$80 and children US$60 after President Mnangagwa decided on a once-off cushion following challenges experienced this year due to exchange rate fluctuations.

The bonuses will be deposited into civil servants’ Nostro accounts.

Civil servants opened the Nostro accounts last year when Government started paying them the US$75 cushioning allowance.

In an interview yesterday, Apex Council deputy secretary-general Mr Gibson Mushangu said they last held a meeting with Government under the National Joint Negotiation Council (NJNC) on Monday and their employer agreed to engage banks so that they don’t charge them account maintenance charges.

“We had a meeting with the Government under the NJNC and we agreed that civil servants will be paid their bonuses from November 30.

“The bonus is going to be calculated based on the basic salary, housing allowance and transport allowance,” he said.

Mr Mushangu said also agreed was that the bonuses will be paid in hard currency.

“The money will be paid in the Nostro accounts which have accumulated bank charges since many of them have been dormant. Government agreed to make arrangements with banks so that they don’t charge us for account maintenance to enable us to get our bonuses in full,” he said.

Mr Mushangu said considering that there was the Christmas festive season and reopening of schools in January, civil servants need a salary increase to meet school fees obligations among other expenses.

“On the cost of living adjustment, we asked the Government to cushion us so that we are able to meet our financial obligations such as paying schools fees,” said Mr Mushangu.

Finance and Economic Development Minister Prof Mthuli Ncube has said all civil servants will be paid their bonuses on time.

This year Government has been making regular salary adjustments to cushion its workers from rising cost of living.

In July civil servants received a salary increase of between 45 and 50 percent.

That increase came after another 25 percent adjustment in April.

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