The cash strapped Marondera Municipality is currently struggling to pay an overdraft loan secured from a local bank four years ago when it retrenched dozens of workers.
The local authority used a staggering US$1.9m as retrenchment package in 2016 as it moved to trim its workforce.
However, according to deliberations from the recent full council meeting, council is yet to repay the loan with full council minutes showing that the local authority is working hard to seal the loan deal by end of this month.
“The Finance Director’s report showed combined savings $4 618 068.21 after the restructuring from the date of implementation of the retrenchment exercise in February 2016 to February 2020 (49 months).
“Retrenchment loan and interest balance as at February 2020 stands at $246, 049.24 and monthly saving stands at $94 246.29.The Agribank overdraft is expected to be fully paid by June 2020 as monthly dues for the loan are being met,” read the full council minutes.
In 2016, council retrenched a total of 90 employees across all departments in a move that left its coffers dry.
According to full council minutes report, the municipality is using money from the Estates Account to repay back the loan.
“The Finance Director reported that the full retrenchment costs were higher that the external loan from Agribank . Part of the repayments were made from the Estates Account and focus should now be given towards the repayment of the advances made from the Estates Account,” read the minutes.
The voluntary workers are supplementing the current bloated workforce as council cannot afford to employ more permanent workers.