Civil servants feel cheated on salary hike

Civil servants feel cheated on the 61 percent salary increment government offered from March as some of the employees have not received the money they were promised.

Both the Civil Servants Trade Union (CSTU) and the Teachers Union of Malawi (TUM) have confirmed that government is breaching an agreement with its employees and warned that they will have no option, but stage another strike after July negotiation cut line.

Said TUM president Chauluka Muwake: “I have received many calls and SMS’s [short message service] from teachers. The nature of the complaints is that teachers have been cheated by being paid seven percent. They are asking [why seven percent as if they were highly paid civil servants].

“Teachers are the worst and the lowest in the eyes of the authorities. If teachers react, it is poor Malawians who will suffer.”

Muwake, who is also president of the Malawi Congress of Trade Unions (MCTU), said government agreed to increase salaries by 61 percent for the least paid and five percent for the highest paid people.

“What has happened is not what was agreed. They should not tamper with people’s salaries, but just increase them by the percentage as agreed,” he said.

He asked government to put to rest the salary increment issue to avoid another strike.

CSTU president Eliah Kamphinda said on Monday most civil servants have not received the agreed increment.

“Civil servants from grade M did not reap enough from the last revision because we concentrated on the lowest three or four grades. The lowest grades range from R to N. Entry point at grade R was K18 000 ($45) now it is over K29 000 (about $72). It looks to be around 61 percent,” said Banda.

He said CSTU and government are still discussing to restructure civil servants’ salaries from July.

Some civil servants interviewed in the week expressed disappointment that they did not get what they expected. Some claimed they received an extra K800 (about $2) and others only had K1 000 (about $2.50) added to their salaries.

“Why is government treating us like this? Can K500 (about $1.25) be 61 percent or five percent increment?” said one teacher in grade L-4 who claimed that others in the same grade have received an increment of K2 000 (about $5).

A police officer who receives K32 000 (about $30) said he only got an extra K1 000 (about $2.50) on his salary.

Minister of Information Moses Kunkuyu on Wednesday faulted the union leaders for not informing their people properly and asked union leaders to take that matter to government.


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