FIREBRAND Secretary General of the Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (PTUZ), Raymond Majongwe, has again blasted the government for allegedly employing piecemeal tactics when addressing the plight of hard-pressed civil servants.
He said his organisation was concerned about the government’s immaterial preoccupation in providing civil servants with cheap transport to work through the Zimbabwe United Passenger Company (ZUPCO)’s mass transport programme while ignoring other pressing needs of government workers and their families.
The government in January last year introduced subsidised mass public transport in urban areas following deadly mass demonstrations over a sharp fuel hike.
However, Majongwe said there was need for the government to come up with holistic measures to address the poor working conditions for civil servants.
“The government is behaving as if the lives of civil servants depend on transport alone,” he said.
“A civil servant has the obligation to provide food on the table for their family. A civil servant has the responsibility to pay school and medical fees for their children,” said Majongwe in an interview with New Zimbabwe.com Tuesday.
He called upon the government not to focus on firefighting issues, but to pay its workers a stable and decent salary, which enables workers to choose which mode of transport they want to use.
“In an ideal situation, civil servants should be able to choose their own mode of transport. Remember before this crisis, some government workers used to even to drive to work. We don’t want to be forced to board these ZUPCO buses,” said Majongwe.
Public Service Commission Secretary, Ambassador Jonathan Wutawunashe, last week revealed that the government was planning to buy an extra 130 buses for public servants before the end of the year as part of a raft of monetary benefits for the impoverished government workers.
“As far as we are concerned, this will not solve our problems. It is not about transport,” added Majongwe. – Newzim