Low pensions are forcing workers to resist retirement


By Sharleen Mohammed

LOW pension payments to workers in both the private and public sectors have forced many to avoid retirement.

Some workers have reportedly gone so far as to misrepresent their dates of birth in order to delay leaving the organizations they would have served.

What makes it worse is that the ongoing hyperinflation and incomes are pretty much very low Compensation by private companies and the government.

In some cases, workers who have reached retirement age are dying on the job due to health problems caused by aging and stress.

said MDC Alliance leader Douglas Mwonzora NewZimbabwe.com that pensioners received too little money to survive.

“Pensioners receive funding that makes absolutely no sense. The plight has been exacerbated by high inflation rates and skyrocketing prices every day,” Mwonzora said.

“The packages are so low that people are deeply depressed and are refusing to retire because they would have served more than 20 years and received a package that does not allow them to buy half the basic necessities that a normal one would Family may want to use for less than a month.”

Zimbabwean pensioners, including but not limited to former teachers, have made numerous complaints to the government in recent years.

Public Service Secretary Paul Mavima said his ministry has been asked to negotiate with local authorities to cut or waive the taxes pensioners have to pay.

“We will conduct the necessary consultations,” Mavima said recently.

Harare East MP Tendai Biti also raised the same issue in Parliament when debating the Pension and Insurance Amendment Bill.

Biti claimed last week that “at least $9 billion worth of retiree money has been lost in the last eight years alone.”

He said insurance companies collect premiums in US dollars but pay pensioners back in the eroded Zimbabwe dollar.


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