ZimPapers Journalists Declare Incapacitation Due To Low Salaries
Journalists at ZimPapers, including the Chronicle, Sunday News, The Herald, uMthunywa, and B-Metro, have declared incapacitation due to low salaries from the government.
The Zimbabwe Union of Journalists (ZUJ) said it is disturbed by this development and has released a statement on the matter. The reporters are paid the equivalent of USD150, which has been eroded by continuous inflation and price increases.
They are also facing understaffed newsrooms, heavy workloads, and a lack of basic tools. The reporters have tried to engage with the employer for an amicable resolution but with no luck. Until their demands are met, they will not be reporting for duty.
In a statement seen by Pindula News, the Union calls for ZimPapers to seriously address the challenges faced by the reporters in light of the difficult economic situation. Reads the statement:
INCAPACITATION OF OUR MEMBERS
The Union is disturbed to know that our members at ZimPapers, particularly the Chronicle, Sunday News, uMthunywa, and B-Metro have declared incapacitation to report for duty due to the meagre salaries that they receive from their employer.
What’s obtaining at the moment is that reporters at these publications are paid an equivalent of USD150 whose buying power has been eroded by the continuous inflation and price increases.
Our members are now unable to commute to and from their workstations as public transport operators are now demanding foreign currency which the reporters don’t earn.
Other challenges include severely understaffed newsrooms and a huge workload, no vehicles to take reporters for assignments, heavily curtailed data allocations, basic tools like pens and pencils and cancellation of out-of-station allowances.
Our members say they have tried to use internal mechanisms to engage with the employer for an amicable resolution to the matter without any luck.
The declaration of incapacity means our members will not be able to report for duty until their demands as listed below are met:
Salary increase to at least US$550 per month for the least paid. Retooling of the newsroom to ensure they are adequately equipped for the
Ensuring they have roadworthy and safe vehicles as they are deployed to cover their diaries.
The Union calls upon Zimpapers to seriously and sincerely deal with the challenges that have grounded the reporters considering that the economy has virtually dollarised making it difficult for those earning meagre RTGS Zim dollars to make ends meet.