Zaka District Administrator’s (DA) office is reportedly demanding US$5 from civil servants as part of contributions towards President Robert Mugabe’s birthday bash which is slated for 27th of February at Great Zimbabwe (GZ) monuments.
This comes amid revelations that Zanu PF Masvingo province is set to raise at least $800 000 for the bash.
Zaka DA, Mr. Andrew Chivanga was quick to deny having called on the civil servants to pay US$5 as part of the ongoing fundraising.
“We are in full swing as a district in fundraisings ahead of the President’s birthday. We are however not in any way forcing people or government employees to donate towards the event,” he said.
Scores of senior government employees who spoke to this reporter confirmed that they were being forced to pay US$5 as the Province seeks to please President Mugabe who turns 92 in two weeks time.
“We were told that we should pay US$5 per employee and after paying, a register would be signed,” said another employee from the District Development Fund (DDF).
“We are just paying out of fear of the unknown since anything associated with registers usually has follow up from the CIO (Central Intelligence Organization). So under such a scenario, you have no choice since the intelligence guys are unpredictable on what they will do to you if you are not found on the register.” Said the DDF employee
“We do not even know how to present such requests to our subordinates. We are currently facing challenges as civil servants and now this, being made to donate towards someone’s birthday when I cannot celebrate my own life,” said a departmental head who requested anonymity .
A senior officer from Agritex added that, “Currently we are failing to fend for our own families as we are getting paltry salaries from government. The very same government owes us our bonuses is still brave enough to demand from our pockets.”
The meeting was attended by the District Development Fund (DDF) head, Tawanda Magadhi together with Crispen Tukwa Livestock Production and Development, Gladys Marozva from the ministry of lands, Obert Pedzisai Agritex head and Joseph Gumbire from the department of mechanization.