Independent Online

Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Like us on FacebookFollow us on TwitterView weather by locationView market indicators

Zimbabwean nurses go on strike after rejecting 100% pay rise as inflation hits a whopping 131.7%

Zimbabwean health workers went on strike on Monday after rejecting a 100% wage hike offer last week, international media reported on Monday. File Photo/ANA.

Zimbabwean health workers went on strike on Monday after rejecting a 100% wage hike offer last week, international media reported on Monday. File Photo/ANA.

Published Jun 21, 2022

Share

Cape Town - Zimbabwean health workers went on strike on Monday after rejecting a 100% wage hike offer last week, international media reported on Monday.

According to news broadcaster Al Jazeera, public health workers and other civil servants in the southern African country are demanding salaries in US dollars as inflation hits 132 percent.

Story continues below Advertisement

Zimbabwe's main nurses' union urged the government to negotiate and warned that lives would be lost if the dispute was not resolved quickly.

The government and health workers are at an impasse after inflation jumped to 131.7% in May, a grim echo of the hyperinflation that wiped out people's savings a decade ago, writes Reuters.

Government workers rejected the below-inflation 100% wage hike offer on Friday.

Zimbabwe’s annual inflation rate jumped to 131.7% this month - the highest in 10 months - from 96.4% in April, as food prices almost tripled.

In an open letter penned to government authorities informing government of their intention to strike, striking doctors said that the decision to strike was taken lightly and that they are fully cognisant of the human costs related to any action of this kind, but the conditions of service, specifically the remuneration of healthcare workers are presently so poor that most health workers can no longer afford the service they provide and nor are they able to look after and fend for their families.

“It is common knowledge that the economic conditions prevailing in the country have rapidly deteriorated, especially over the last three months. This is something that the government has acknowledged and is reflected by the government’s continued review of tariffs and expenses. State-related enterprises have also reviewed their tariffs on a continued basis.”

Story continues below Advertisement

The letter continues: “Recent examples include the increases in electricity and fuel prices, toll fees and vehicle licensing fees, to mention a few. Even the government itself has reviewed and increased the prices of hospital services, rating them against the interbank rate.

The group said that there could be no greater acknowledgement by the health authorities regarding the loss of value than this.

“Inflation has skyrocketed and is now greater than 130%, year on year. The property datum line for a small family of six now sits at $133 000 ZWL. Even the highest-earning healthcare workers now earn far less than this.”

Story continues below Advertisement

IOL

Share