Buhera South Member of Parliament Joseph Chinotimba today brought up the issue of the Independent Media Panel of Inquiry again, the second time in two months, asking why members of the panel continued to get allowances of between $5 000 and $10 000 a month while salaries of Zimbabwe Broadcasting employees, some of whom were earning $400 a month, had been slashed by half.
Last month Chinotimba asked where the government was getting money to pay IMPI members $300 a day while children of war veterans could not go to school because they had no money to pay school fees.
The Deputy Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare Tongai Muzenda asked Chinotimba to put his question in writing because it was difficult to answer the question there and then.
Q & A:
*MR. CHINOTIMBA: Mr. Speaker, my question is directed to the Minister of Media, Information and Broadcasting Services and in his absence, I will direct it to the Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare.
MR. SPEAKER: Order. Can the hon. member justify the transfer of his question from the Minister of Information to the Minister of Labour?
*MR. CHINOTIMBA: Mr. Speaker, the question pertains to the issue of the welfare of workers so I wanted to ask the Minister of Media, Information and Broadcasting Services because it happened under his Ministry but I will ask the Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare to answer me.
My question is – Minister, we heard from the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation workers that their salaries were slashed on the reasons that the holding Ministry does not have funds. However, later after that, we have seen others being given huge salaries. Those who were earning US$400 had their salaries slashed to US$200 and then we have IMPI coming in and now they were being given US$5 000 to US$10 000 per month, surpassing the workers who were getting US$400 which was slashed.
My question is, as the Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare, did you view it reasonable that you slash the salaries of other staff members and then you are also giving huge salaries to IMPI? As the Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare, do you think that is correct and what was the rationale behind as the Minister? Thank you.
THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF PUBLIC SERVICE, LABOUR AND SOCIAL WELFARE (MR. MUZENDA): Thank you Mr. Speaker. The question is difficult to answer impromptu. If it were possible, may Hon. Chinotimba put his question in writing? Thank you.