(Last Updated on September 29, 2020 by Editor)
HARARE – Members of Parliament have demanded that their benefits be paid in US Dollars at a time where the government is encouraging people to embrace the local currency.
Although the foreign currency auction system has brought some stability in the exchange rate, many citizens are still struggling with the local currency which has continued to lose value since its introduction last year in June.
The request was raised by Headlands legislator, Christopher Chingosho after raising a point of privilege in Parliament last Thursday.
Chingosho said “my humble request Hon. Speaker is for the amount we are getting per month as well as the coupons to be in US Dollars.”
“I am saying if we are getting ZWL$7 000, it should be US$7 000 and if we are getting 20 litres worth of coupons it should be 20 litres in US Dollars,” added the parliamentarian.
The legislator argued this would go a long way in cushioning legislators who he argued currently are getting equivalent to US$170 per month which is expected to cover all their costs including taking care of their families and servicing cars.
Responding to the point, Speaker of Parliament, Advocate Jacob Mudenda said he was meeting the chief whips to discuss issues which include the ones raised by Chingosho.
Government, this year in March backtracked on it’s initial ban of the multi-currency regime imposed last year. It claimed the reintroduction of the multi-currency regime was to cushion citizens against the effects of the lock down imposed to curb the Covid-19 pandemic.
As a result most of the economy has self dollarised with many now charging for their goods and services in foreign currency.
It also went on to approve US$75 cushion allowances for all civil servants.