Zambia Postal Services Corporation Limited (ZAMPOST) offices in Kitwe and Ndola have closed down.
This follows the continued protests of delayed salaries by workers.
A check at the Ndola and Kitwe Post offices found the premises locked down with clients stranded.
Some workers talked to complained that the Ndola post office was owning them over seven months in salary arrears.
“What is happening here is very inhuman. This management has continued to buy vehicles for themselves, yet we are not paid. This is so sad. What is more unfortunately is that the Minister of Transport and Communication, ba [Brian] Mushimba can say a lie that we are paid. Who is paying us and who is paid? Maybe they are paying ba McPherson Chanda and his friends,” a worker said.
And Forum for Democracy and Development Chairperson for Labour Yotam Mtayachalo said it was a shame that Minister Mushimba could mislead Parliament over the salaries of ZAMPOST workers.
In a statement, Mtayachalo said it was annoying that while people were suffering, those in Government were busy lying.
“As FDD, we are disappointed with the failure by the Zambia Postal Services Corporation Limited and government to find a quick solution to the sit-in protest by workers at ZAMPOST following delayed payment of salary arrears. We feel workers are on firm ground to demand what is due to them, and in fact they have been patient enough to go for more than five(5) months without being paid their salaries especially that they have never been awarded any salary increment since the year 2012. It is very unfortunate that the minister of Transport and Communications Honourable Brian Mushimba could mislead Parliament and the nation at large on the floor of the House by giving false information on the status of salary arrears that the company owed workers,” Mtayachalo stated.
“Further workers have also gone for six terms without being paid their education allowance and even the medical allowance of K500 across the board. What was earlier paid to them was deducted from their salaries without justified reasons, which is a violation of the collective agreement. The workers are going through very serious financial challenges, and as such management and the government cannot have the luxury of keeping quite as most of the workers have failed to pay for school fees for their children and many have been evicted by landlords from rented houses.”
He noted that in spite of the failure to pay workers, the company had continued to pay top management staff.
“I nspite of these developments, we are also aware that the company has been paying top management staff for education of their children who usually go to very expensive schools at the expense of the workers. It is in light of the foregoing that we want to call upon the Minister of Labour Honourable Joyce Simukoko to break her silence on this matter and pressurise the Minister of Finance Honourable Margaret Mwanakatwe to expeditiously release the money that the government owes ZAMPOST workers so that workers can be paid all their salary arrears without any further delay to easy their sufferings,” stated Mtayachalo.