Dowa District Council junior staff yesterday shut down offices of the District Commissioner, Fannie Msimuko, in protest against low salaries.
The staff, mostly revenue collectors, watchmen and cleaners claim that they have been receiving K16 530 per month, which is way below the minimum government wage of K25 000.
According to one of the revenue collectors, James Msamba, they have been sending letters to the DC since 2014, but she has never responded.
The angry staff said they will open the offices once the council raises their wages by 20 percent. However, in one of the previous council meetings, the council’s Finance and Works Service Committee chairperson, Simeon Nyemba, appealed to the council members to re-visit the direct employees’ salaries for them to perform better in line with the council’s services.
Nyemba alleged that the council’s staff stay two to three months without receiving their salaries; a development he said is aggravating their problems because they have families and relatives to look after.
He said the council is working with a demotivated staff that cannot be trusted to increase the revenues from the market while they receive a paltry K16 530.00 per month.
In the 2015/16 financial year, Dowa District Council registered the highest in revenue collections.