Redcliff municipality in $1m rap

Disgruntled Redcliff Municipality workers have slapped the local authority with an over $1million lawsuit for failing to meet its financial obligations towards its workforce dating back to 2012.
The financially hamstrung local authority, it has been gathered, is owing its employees a combined $1 165 000 in unpaid salary arrears for the period ranging between 2012 to 2015.
Through their lawyer, Artwell Chinamatira of Mavhiringidze and Mashanyare Legal Practitioners, the workers are demanding the outstanding salary or the council risks attachment of property.
Chinamatira told this reporter the matter had been taken to the High Court.
"We have issued the High Court with the application for registration of the award and we are awaiting the response," he said.
Chinamatira also confirmed the local authority being served with the court application for the award.
"They have 10 days to respond to the application, failure of which the courts can proceed with the case unopposed," added the lawyer.
Court papers gleaned by this reporter show that the council received the application on 13 September this year.
The papers also indicate that a total of 83 workers, under the Zimbabwe Urban Council Workers Union, are suing their employer.
Chinamatira said it was a criminal offence not to pay an employee.
"The institution is heartless, a salary is an entitlement hence it is a criminal offence not to pay an employee. We, therefore, urge them to honour up to their payment," said Chinamatira.
He also accused the local authority of ignoring an arbitral award of 2015.
Arbitrator, Basil Makururu awarded an arbitral award to the council on 16 December 2015 which the local authority failed to meet.
"Before and after the arbitral award council failed to pay the workers. That alone tells you something about the treatment of workers," he added.
Redcliff Mayor, Freddy Kapuya could not be reached for comment as his phone went unanswered.
Efforts to contact the town's Acting Town Clerk Gilson Chakauya were also futile.LOCAL NEWS

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