SADC staff tell Mswati they want salary hike

By Bakang Mhaladi

Gaborone – The Southern African Development Community (SADC) secretariat staff last week told the regional bloc’s chairperson, King Mswati III that their salaries are low, which has affected morale.

King Mswati was in Botswana on a three-day working visit to the SADC headquarters in Gaborone, after he arrived in the country on Monday, May 8.

The secretariat Staff Association secretary general, Mojakisane Mathaha said their salaries were low compared to other regional economic blocs.

He said this had seen SADC battle to retain staff due to failure to offer competitive remuneration and equitable job grading.

Mathaha said the removal of a security allowance had further eroded their earnings, and the issue, which is under discussion, was taking too long to resolve.

“The speedy resolution of these issues would help restore morale and productivity among employees,” Mathaha said.

Mswati appreciated their challenges, with SADC executive director, Dr Stergomena Lawrence Tax saying the bloc’s revised organisational structure would ensure effective and efficient running of the 15-member organisation.

Mswati later witnessed the swearing in of seven SADC Administrative Tribunal judges from Malawi, Mozambique, Nambia, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

The tribunal was established during the 35th SADC Summit of Heads of State and Government in Gaborone in 2015, replacing the defunct SADC Tribunal.  Some member states, notably Zimbabwe, had expressed misgivings about the previous arrangement, leading to the suspension of the SADC Tribunal five years ago.

Zimbabwe pulled out of the then Windhoek-based body in 2009, claiming the regional court had not been properly constituted.

The new body deals with cases between member states and not individuals, and is confined to the advisory interpretation of the SADC Treaty and other protocols negotiated among member states. Mswati said the role of the judges was key to the successful execution of SADC mandate.

May 2017
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