Parly summons Chitungwiza clerk

HARARE - Parliament has summoned Chitungwiza town clerk George Makunde for a briefing on the conditions of service for municipal workers.

Makunde was invited by the Paurina Mpariwa-chaired parliamentary portfolio committee on Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare. This comes after Makunde suspended three council employees who include workers committee chairperson Ephraim Katsina, Ngonidzashe Marau and Tamson Bamusi for exposing the rot at Chitungwiza Municipality.

The trio appeared before the committee in March where they raised concerns over their employer’s failure to pay them for 13 months.

The union leaders also presented evidence of corruption involving a secret account from which 18 council managers were withdrawing $235 000 a month. The municipality subsequently suspended Katsina and company without benefits, accusing them of releasing damaging information about the council and violating its code of conduct.

This riled legislators, with Dexter Nduna, Chegutu West Member of Parliament, moving a motion to issue a certificate of privilege so that the workers could go back to work in line with the provisions of section 13 of the Privileges, Immunities and Powers of Parliament Act.

Parliament granted the trio the certificate but up to now they have not been reinstated.

In a May 14 letter to Makunde, the committee wants him to appear before it today.

“The purpose of the meeting is for you to brief the committee on the conditions of service of the municipality’s workers including salaries and their bargaining power in salary negotiations,” part of the invite reads.

In moving the motion, Nduna noted that it was not proper for the august House to “stand aside and let employees suffer a double tragedy of first, labour without pay and, secondly, being unjustly suspended for blowing the whistle on graft when the directors and managers of  a local authority abuse their offices and privileged positions for undue enrichment, amassing of wealth and derivation of undue gains and benefits at the expense of the suffering employees.”

“If we allow them to be suspended for giving evidence before a committee of Parliament and we do nothing, what message will we be sending out to the thousands of other Zimbabweans who are willing and ready to give evidence before parliamentary committees but are likely to face retribution from those in privileged positions for such an honourable act?” he said.

Post a comment

Readers are kindly requested to refrain from using abusive, vulgar, racist, tribalistic, sexist, discriminatory and hurtful language when posting their comments on the Daily News website.
Those who transgress this civilised etiquette will be barred from contributing to our online discussions.
- Editor

Your email address will not be shared.