Masvingo City Council workers have started attaching their employer's movable assets over a US$3,5 million debt in outstanding salaries. The workers recently won a long standing High Court battle against their employer after demanding to be paid the outstanding salaries.
The assets being attached include refuse collection trucks, ambulances and office furniture.
The attachment and subsequent auctioning of council property could cripple council operations.
Masvingo mayor Alderman Femius Chakabuda confirmed on Monday that the workers had started attaching council property.
But he downplayed the effects, saying there were many legal processes to be followed before the assets go under the hammer. Alderman Chakabuda said council was busy looking for funds to pay the workers to forestall the auctioning of council property.
"Yes, the workers have started attaching council property, but it does not mean that the assets will be sold in an instant," he said.
"There are a lot of legal processes that will be followed first before the assets are sold and we are quite sure we will solve the problem."
Alderman Chakabuda said council would soon engage workers' representatives to discuss payment issues.
The workers early this year won a court award for salary increment, but council refused to implement the court ruling citing lack of funds.
The case was then referred to the High Court where council was ordered to pay them over US$3,5 million in outstanding salaries.