Shops and domestic workers in Mzuzu have called on employers to raise their salaries from a minimum of K25 500 (about $41) to K39 000 (about $57) per month.
Speaking in an interview Tuesday, a representative of the workers, Ishmael Ahmed, said since 2014 employers have been neglecting calls by the workers to have their salaries raised.
He said with low salaries, employees have found life very hard as the cost of living keeps rising.
“We need to pay rent, electricity, water, fees for children and look into other needs in our families. We are not well paid and life is becoming unbearable for us. We have been pushing for a hike since 2014 but the shop owners have not been cooperative,” said Ahmed.
The employees also issued a notice to take action if the employers do not look into their grievances within seven days.
Shop owners representative Veejay Yadav said the employees demands are not reasonable considering that businesses have slowed down with the current economic problems.
However, he said the employers will discuss the issue with the workers.
Ministry of Labour, Youth and Manpower Development spokesperson Simon Mvundula said the minimum wage set by government is still at K671 (about $0.9) per day but the figure does not mean employers should be paying the minimum. n