Security guards stage demo over poor salaries

The Private Security Workers Union (PSWU) on Wednesday staged a demonstration at Fawcett Security company to press the company to review salaries and working conditions for its employees.

The lowest-paid security guard is said to be earning ZWL$72 000.

PSWU which represents more than 10 security companies said the demonstrations are also going to be conducted at other Fawcett outlets across the country.

This is after ongoing negotiations between the employees and the employers failed to yield any positive results

In an interview with CITE, PSWU Matabeleland regional officer and the national negotiator, Nduna Dladla said the security guards staged the demonstration as efforts to engage their employer have not been fruitful.

“We were supposed to come up with a new wage structure with effect from 1 October. When we went for an NEC meeting in Harare, we had listed our agenda and the main issue that stalled the negotiations was the grading of employees which was not very important, we told them as employees that we were not prepared for that because we told them we had not put submissions for it and they said if we haven’t discussed the grading system we are not going to discuss anything about wages,” said Dladla.

He added that what also irked the employees is that the company wanted to scrap some of the benefits including soap and shoe polish.

“They wanted us to scrap it and again they wanted to regrade the workers and impose a new grading system.  The Fawcett employees were not saying they don’t want to go to work but the cost of living is too high, the company has to address their plight by giving them decent salaries,” said Dladla.

“We are the only industry where the lowest worker is paid something less than US$100 and when we are raising this issue they don’t listen and the only way they can listen to us is if we do what we did yesterday.”

In addition, PSWU General Secretary John Tarisai Manyuchi said it is a pity that the employers in the industry are very inconsiderate.

“We have three employer organisations in the industry who have different backgrounds, some of them are actually aligned to political parties and at the end of the day when they are going for negotiations you will find that some of the negotiators from other employer organisations will come in political party vehicles to the negotiations and as a result of that it’s like they were trying to instil fear,” said Manyuchi.

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