~*Dar residents say new wages are mere political ploy*~


JF-Expert Member
Feb 11, 2007
Dar residents say new wages are mere political ploy

2007-10-11 09:56:58
By Gadiosa Lamtey and David Mambo

Dar es Salaam residents this week reacted negatively to the newly announced minimum wage for the private sector, claiming that it was a mere political ploy to hoodwink the people.

Speaking to The Guardian yesterday, Patrick Kaijage, a business person with office near the New Post Office said that the minimum wage announced was a mere political propaganda because it would not help people like house girls who were working without contracts.

``Most house girls come from poor families and do not know how to read and write. How do you expect them to know their rights?`` queried Kaijage.

Kaijage said it took time and a lot of training before house girls could master their work adding that telling employers to pay 65,000/- would hurt them.

``The government ought to review this position because the 65,000 salary is still meager for house girls and boys who ply to and from their working places due to the high living standards,``said Kaijage.

Kaijage gave examples of house rent and bus fares as some of the costs which had gone up rendering the announced salary scales peanuts.

He said most of the maids plying to and from work had families and perhaps even house girls which could make the amount too small to cater for their needs.

Kaijage called upon the government to further review their salaries if they wanted to improve their well being.

``The government wants the public to deviate people`s attention from controversial issues like signing the Buzwagi mining contract in dubious circumstances and the financial scam involving the Bank of Tanzania.

Coming with news on new wage scale from nowhere is meant to deviate people`s attention from core national issues,? said Kaijage.

Mohamed Chuma a resident of Temeke, said that the announced minimum wage scale would help nab employers who employ people without contracts.

``The exercise should start now because this is an order from the government, ``said Chuma.

Chuma said that the new wages would help to provide employment to people who prior to that worked on temporary basis.

A bar owner at Kinondoni, Wilfred Massawe, said the government was trading jokes in the employment industry.

``I don`t think bar owners will afford to pay their bar maids 80, 000/- per month.``

Massawe said setting wages for private sector operators was no easy task, and considered the announcement to be politically motivated.

``This is political gimmicks. We are accustomed to the government making similar announcements on wages. It won`t work at all,`` lamented Massawe.

Another resident, Mary Jacob of Magomeni, commended the minister for attempting to rescue Tanzanians from the poverty gutter.

Jacob, however, claimed that the announcement would increase unemployment because some employers will not afford to pay their workers.

She voiced concern that high wages would create unemployment as most people would be reluctant to employ more people.

``It?s a good start, but I think the government ought to put in place more policies to protect the workers in their working places, especially those working in businesses owned by Tanzanians of Asian origin,? she added.

A house girl in Mwenge, Mariam Hassan, expressed excitement over the new wages, saying: ``The government had forgotten us for a long time, and thank God they have heard our prayers.``
She said she used to earn 30,000/- which was too small to cater for her extended family.

``To me, 65000/-` is relatively better off because it will relieve me of the burden a bit,`` said Hassan.

The government on Monday announced the minimum wage for private sector employees due to take effect next month.
The announcement covered eight sectors of water, marine services, hotels and guest houses.

Other areas covered are agriculture, minerals, security companies as well as business and industries.
Others more are health, transport and communication.

SOURCE: Guardian
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