ZIMBABWE Newspapers (Zimpapers) Bulawayo branch employees have accused the company of paying them 60% less than what their counterparts in Harare earn.
The disgruntled workers petitioned head office to rationalise their salaries saying they were tired of the discrimination. In the petition addressed to Zimpapers group chief operations officer Pikirai Deketeke and copied to the group human resources manager Herbert Simemeza and Bulawayo branch manager Marks Shayamano, the workers said it appeared they were being viewed with disdain.
“We the undersigned Zimpapers Bulawayo branch workers wish to officially bring it to the attention of your esteemed office that having exhausted all channels regarding the differences in salaries between Zimpapers branches by more than 60%, we request the rationalisation of the said salaries,” read the petition.
“The company appears to hold one branch in high regard while regarding the equally faithful employees elsewhere with disdain.”
The workers said while they appreciated that Zimpapers was facing financial challenges, they thought rationalising salaries would solve the “perennial clamouring for salary reviews from our branch”.
“We hope your esteemed office will treat this case as a matter of urgency with favourable consideration being given to the plight of the long suffering workers who are virtually living from hand to mouth on a monthly basis,” the workers said.
“Surviving on bank loans with such low salaries has become an unsustainable nightmare for the majority, if not for all of us (especially Bulawayo branch).
“We hope your good office will expeditiously deal with this matter with the urgency it rightly deserves.
“We hope to get a favourable response within the next two weeks.”
Deketeke yesterday confirmed receiving the petition, but declined to be drawn into detail.
“I received the petition and it is up to me and the petitioners to discuss the issue,” he said.
Zimpapers titles have been at the forefront of exposing salary discrepancies at State-owned companies and local authorities where senior executives have been earning obscene salaries while low level workers got a pittance.
Media, Information and Broadcasting Services minister Jonathan Moyo last year at a lecture on the future of the media industry delivered at the National University of Science and Technology criticised the Zimpapers business model where he said its branches were treated as separate business units.