Civil Society suspends Monday sit-in
THE Civil Servants Trade Union (CSTU) has said it has reached a compromise with the government on pay hike and has since suspended the sit-in that was slated for tomorrow.
In an interview with The Sunday Times after a meeting that was held with government officials on Friday, CSTU Secretary General, Madalitso Njolomole, said they have agreed on a payment hike of K72, 000 from K60,000 for the lowest paid civil servants.
Initially, CSTU demanded K75, 000 for the lowest paid civil servant.
“We had a negotiations’ meeting with the government side and we received the government’s offer. As [part of the] negotiation process, we agreed on K72, 000 for the least paid workers.
During the negotiations, we also observed that some people in grades like K and L—mainly supervisors, teachers and policemen and women— are not paid well. So we have given government two days (Monday and Tuesday) to fulfil its promise,” Njolomole said.
A few days ago, CSTU gave the government a two-day ultimatum to address its grievances, warning that, failing which, public workers would stage a sit-in from Monday.
Njolomole further said the sit it has since been suspended due to the outcome of negotiations that took place on Friday.
“As it is, we will go into our various constituencies to tell civil servants to go to work on Monday. We have just suspended the sit-in but in the event that government does not stick to its commitment we will simply tell our people to start the sit-in at a later date,” Njolomole said.
The civil servants’ push for pay rise comes against the background of a warning by the International Monetary Fund that Malawi’s wage bill is huge. It has since asked the government to strengthen tax compliance to mobilise enough resources in line with the country’s goals.
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