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Zanu-PF demands better allowances for councillors

by Staff reporter
07 Mar 2024 at 05:08hrs | Views
A Zanu-PF legislator has pleaded with the Local Government and National Housing ministry to improve the plight of local authority councillors by offering them competitive conditions of service.

In a motion on conditions of service to improve the plight of councillors in Parliament, Mrehwa West Member of Parliament Farai Jere, expressed concern about the plight of councillors.

Jere said: "Concerned with the marginalisation which our society exhibits towards our councillors whereby some sections of our population perceive them as volunteers despite the unwavering patriotism and devotion to their national duties.

"Fully appreciating and acknowledging that councillors are the real foot soldiers in the constituencies as they are the engines that drive all our developmental programmes and projects for the benefit of the people to whom we are accountable as Members of Parliament.

"Now, therefore, calls upon the Ministry of Local Government and National Housing to come up with competitive conditions of service in order to improve the plight of our councillors so that their livelihoods can be sustained with dignity which is commensurate with their dedication to duties and responsibilities to the nation."

Jere described councillors as unsung heroes for "overseeing service delivery, planning, budgeting, revenue management and representing constituency needs within their wards, for devolution to be effective, local governance requires competent and motivated leaders".

Local Government minster, Winston Chitando has since increased monthly allowances for councillors from ZWL$113 000 (US$7) to ZWL$1 358 255 (US$80).

In a circular dated February 27, 2024, allowances for mayors and chairpersons were increased to ZWL$1 629 906 with their deputies set to earn ZWL$1 494 081.

Committees chairpersons now pocket ZWL$1 412 585 per month.

The increases were effective on 1 January 2024.

But most councillors interviewed rubbished the increases saying it was an insult.

"This is an insult, surely, how can the minister approve allowances that are less than US$100 with all the work that councillors do?" one of the councillors asked.

Source - newsday
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