Pathetic wages for local football stars!
Ever imagined what local footballers are getting?
A snap survey by Mywage has shown that soccer is not a ticket to wealth in Zimbabwe, especially not for our local footballers. The likes of Evans Gwekerere and Benjamin Marere still try to make ends despite their brilliant soccer skills.
Perhaps they hang on for the passion of the game.
So sad are their salaries such that the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) has had to intervene, saying that the football players are paid “slave wages”.
The Zimbabwe Premier Soccer League has imposed salary caps on players and introduced wages ranging from US$100 to US$150 per month, in a bid to weather the storm and ensure that clubs do not collapse. Winning bonuses have been pegged at US$30 a match.
This might explain why several top players are ditching the local league and taking their talent to minor leagues such as the Botswana and Swaziland premiership. Some local players have even gone to the extent of going to play in Sudan, while others have gone to Cyprus and Turkey.
ZCTU secretary general Wellington Chibhebhe said that footballers’ wages were “enslaving the football players” and in contravention of the International Labour Convention Article 95 on the protection of wages.
Chibebe said: “Every worker is entitled to a salary increase, soccer players included. No one, not even government, has the authority to put a lid on salary increments, everyone has a right to Collective Bargaining.”
He said the Poverty Datum Line (PDL) is currently pegged at US$454 and for the Premiership to prescribe the monthly salaries to be between US$100 and US$150 is being unrealistic.
“Paying workers anything short of the PDL is tantamount to enslaving them,” he said. “It would be commendable for the PSL to ensure that players are not exploited by setting a minimum wage of not less than US$400. Experience has taught us that management usually wants to prosper at the expense of the workers. Soccer clubs and the PSL are what they are today because of soccer players and to exploit the same people, who keep the funds rolling in is unthinkable.”
Gilbert Banda, a celebrated defender who has played for the national team, was reported to have complained about wages and that the situation would get worse if supporters did not come to the games.