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THERE should be no sugar coated salary increments which are not sustainable under the new regime, the Zambia Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) has said.

 ZCTU president Chishimba Nkole said unions wanted a free bargaining atmosphere where they could lobby for sustainable salary increments.

Mr Nkole said it was important that workers freely ask for what they wanted and not just pronounced increments by Government which were long lived.

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He said when the state makes “sugar coated” salary increments, it takes many years for another increment to be effected and takes away unions’ bargaining power.

Mr Nkole said the new government should provide unions a free bargaining atmosphere to come up with a package that all employees and other stakeholders would be happy with.

“The government needs to come up with sustainable salary increments. This can be done by allowing unions to bargain freely and come up with a package that will be pleasing to everyone,” he said.

Mr Nkole said “sugar coated” salary increments had not occurred well for employees in the past regimes as they ended up staying for a long time without any increments.

And Mr Nkole said the government should not feel insulted when unions demand better conditions of service for workers.

He said the State must be ready to facilitate for an atmosphere where there was bargaining for better packages.

He said the PF regime created separate unions which worshipped them and ended up denying employees of an effective representation.

Mr Nkole advised the government not to create divisions in the labour movement.

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