Civil servants will have to wait longer for their salary increment as government says it is still consulting with budget and remuneration specialists on the percentage to award the workers.
But the Civil Servants Trade Union (CSTU) has expressed frustration with the delay to implement what it says was agreed upon during their discussions with the Government Negotiating Team (GNT) constituted by the previous administration.
Minister of Information, Tourism and Civic Education Kondwani Nankhumwa said in a statement issued yesterday that consultations are still going on to harmonise salaries in the civil service to ensure that all officers at the same grade get similar perks despite the departments they work in.
There have been speculations in the social media that government is ready to give civil servants a seven percent salary increment, but Nankhumwa clarified in an interview that the percentage under discussion was proposed by the People’s Party (PP) regime and was put on hold after the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) took power.
“We found that the PP administration had proposed to give civil servants seven percent, but we put that on hold. We are reviewing it again. That is why we have restarted negotiations with our budget and civil servants’ remuneration experts because we realised that there was a discomfort of some sort among government employees,” said Nankhumwa.
But CSTU president Servace Sakala said in as far as the union is concerned, discussions on the matter were concluded last 21 April and what remains is implementation.
He said the issue of seven percent was mere speculation as it was never discussed during their negotiations with government neither did it communicate to them anything on the matter.
In March this year, the CSTU petitioned government demanding a speedy review of the disparities of salaries in the civil service which it said are oppressive and promote a culture of elitism. But government only revised leave grants, which came into effect on July 1, 2014.