Government has responded to the civil servants demands for payment of their salaries in United States dollars saying the Central Bank only consider critical sectors when it comes to the allocation of foreign currency.
Addressing the media in the capital today, Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube urged civil servants to accept payment in RTGS saying the government does not earn foreign currency.
“l need to be very clear that government cannot pay civil servants or anyone in hard currency because we do not earn it as well.
“Our job through the Central Bank is to allocate the little foreign currency that we earn to critical sectors but there is no reason for us to pay anyone in hard currency and that cannot happen.
“So we are currently paying in RTGS and l urge them to accept that as a mode of payment since we are not able to pay them in foreign currency,” he said.
Meanwhile Ncube urged doctors who are on strike to go back to work saying the government is playing its part to make sure their demands are met.
“l really want to urge them to go back to work because we have mate their demands,l think that’s being unfair for them to stay away from work because people are dying in hospitals.
“l think its very important that they considers ethics first before everything so they should go back to work and we will do our part to make sure that we meet their demands,” he added.
Civil servants are paid in Real Time Gross Settlement, whose value has taken a massive knock since the announcement of a new monetary policy and a two percent tax on electronic payments.