Ex-MPs demand $2,3m sitting allowances

HARARE - Former legislators have demanded their sitting allowances and benefits backdated to 2008.

The 110 aggrieved ex-Members of Parliament (MPs) told the Daily News that they were owed $21 000 each.

The 7th Parliament opened in August 2008 and ran until August 2013.

Pearson Mungofa, a former MDC MP for Highfield, confirmed they were owed a total of $2,3 million.

He is also representing  the  former MPs who are demanding  their money from government.

“We are still to be paid our outstanding monies by Parliament, although minister of Finance Patrick Chinamasa made an undertaking to pay up,” Mungofa said.

“As former MPs, we demand the money since Parliament bought vehicles for incumbent legislators. We were expecting to be paid as well.

“Despite the promises of payment made by Chinamasa in Parliament during the presentation of the 2014 Budget, there is no money so far.

“We have been given promises that end of November next month, we would be paid. The amounts differ depending on each MP but the highest is about $21 000 and the lowest is $12 000.”

Mungofa was, however, not sure whether they would be paid in full or not, or whether the minister would stagger the payments.

“Even if we go to court, we will not win because the minister will argue government has no money,” Mungofa said.

Chinamasa has promised legislators who served during the inclusive government would receive their pensions, benefits and retrenchment packages before the end of 2014.

During the 2014 budget presentation, he acknowledged that some former legislators had fallen on hard times and were now demanding a retirement pension.

Contacted for comment yesterday, Chinamasa said he was aware that former Cabinet ministers and legislators were facing a hard time financially and had appealed to him to bail them out. 

“I know we have arrears for MPs in allowances and some of them have hit a hard time now that they are no longer in government, including former ministers who served during the inclusive Government, we have outstanding payment of allowances due to them,” Chinamasa said.

“Treasury acknowledges this indebtedness, and will endeavour to honour the payment commitment towards Members of Parliament allowances.”

Comments (2)

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Being an MP is a contract with a specific timeframe on being on the part time job.A part time job does not deserve a retrenchment package.May the Mps forget about the retrenchment package and work on sitting allowances only. By the way have they finished repaying the cars they were given.If not may the secretary of parliament deduct that and give them their balances if any.Those with balances to the state should pay back before year end or return the cars bought by public funds.

mmm - 16 October 2014

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