Zimbabwe: Civil Servants Accept Pay Deal

Zimbabwe's public sector workers said on Thursday they had accepted a government pay offer, averting a potentially damaging strike in a country facing its worst economic crisis in a decade.

The workers had on Tuesday threatened to stay away from work unless the state raised wages to the equivalent of US$475 per month for the lowest paid -- a move they said would only keep up with crippling inflation.

After negotiations which stretched into Thursday, the Civil Service Apex Council -- a confederation of public sector unions -- said the government had tabled an improved offer which it found acceptable.

"Through further negotiations and dialogue, we have achieved to make the government pay each and every civil servant the sum of 400 Zimbabwe dollars (US$45) as a once-off payment together with the salary of July, regardless of one's grade," the union said in a statement.

The union said it would continue talks with the government on another wage increase, which would take effect in August. -- Reuters

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