Employees and Social Security

The relationship between employer and employee is guided by the Labour Act Chapter 28:01, which states that “every person who is employed by or working for any other person and receiving or entitled to receive any remuneration in respect of such employment or work shall be deemed to be under a contract of employment with that other person, whether such contract is reduced to writing or not”. The Labour Act Chapter 28:01, Section 12(1).

The Labour Act Chapter 28:01 therefore advocates for social justice and democracy in the workplace by declaring and defining the fundamental rights of employees, providing a legal framework within which employees and employers can bargain collectively for the improvement of conditions of employment; and promotes fair labour standards.

National pension scheme

All companies in Zimbabwe are compelled to remit pension contributions to National Social Security Authority, (NSSA)’s Pension and Other Benefits Scheme. The Pension and Other Benefits Scheme is based on a 50/50 contribution from the employers and employees and it amounts to the total of 6% of basic wage/salary. It is for every working Zimbabwean above the age of 16 years and under the age of 65 years who is in permanent employment, seasonal, contract or temporary employment.

The funds provide an important cushion for Zimbabwean citizens during invalidity, retirement or death of a breadwinner who was a member of the scheme.

Terms of employment

The Labour Act Chapter 28:01 stipulates the general terms of employment. These are stated in the contract of employment which is an agreement entered into between an employer and an employee at the time the employee is hired. It outlines the exact nature of their business relationship, specifically what compensation the employee will receive in exchange for specific work performed as well as when and how the employment contract can be terminated. It is an oral or written, express or implied agreement specifying terms and conditions under which a person consents to perform certain duties as directed and controlled by an employer in return for an agreed upon wage or salary.

Upon engagement, the employer shall inform the employer in writing of the following contract details:

  • The name and address of the employer;
  • The period of time, if limited, for which the employee is engaged;
  • The terms of probation, if any;
  • The terms of any employment code;
  • Particulars of the employee’s remuneration, its manner of calculation and the intervals at which it will be paid;
  • Particulars of the benefits receivable in the event of sickness or pregnancy;
  • Hours of work;
    Particulars of any bonus or incentive production scheme;
    Particulars of vacation leave and vacation pay;
    Particulars of any other benefits provided under the contract of employment.

Both parties shall abide by the general terms and conditions of employment and anyone who contravenes the terms of employment shall be guilty of an offence.

Termination of employment

According to the Labour Law in Zimbabwe, a contract of employment can be terminated if the employer and employee mutually agree to it in writing. This is also the case if an employee is engaged in a fixed-term contract or for performance of a specific task and the contract has expired after the mandated period or the task is completed.

Notice periods

In cases where a longer period of notice has not been provided for under a contract of employment or in any relevant enactment, the Zimbabwean Labour Law states that notice of termination of the contract of employment to be given by either party shall be:

  • Three months in the case of a contract without limit of time or a contract for a period of two years or more;
  • Two months in the case of a contract for a period of one year or more but less than two years;
  • One month in the case of a contract for a period of six months or more but less than one year;
  • Two weeks in the case of a contract for a period of three months or more but less than six months;
  • One day in the case of a contract for a period of less than three months or in the case of casual work or seasonal work.

Cases where contracts cannot be terminated

  • Death of the employer: In a situation where the employer has died the contract continues to have effect until it expires.
  • Contracts can also not be terminated on the grounds of race, place of origin, sex, religion, political opinion, and tribe.
  • Contracts cannot be terminated without notice from the employer without strong reasons.

Cases where employers can terminate contracts

An employer can terminate an employment contract if an employee:

  • Is guilty of theft or fraud,
  • Willfully disobeys a lawful order,
  • Willfully and unlawfully destroys employer’s property,
  • Is absent for a period of five days or more working days without giving a reasonable excuse,
  • Lacks a skill that he or she implicitly said they are capable of,
  • Is substantially negligent in his or her duties,


Employment can be terminated by retrenchment. The law states that the employer has to

  • Notify the appropriate worker’s committee or trade union giving concrete reasons as to why he wants to retrench.
  • Submit names of those who are going to be retrenched.
  • Send a copy of the notice of retrenchment to the Retrenchment Board.

A copy of the proposal should also be sent to the labour investigation officer for investigation to see whether retrenchment should be allowed and that all procedures of retrenchment according to Labour Law are followed. However, if the Labour Relations Officer sees the reason for retrenchment as unclear and not in terms of which retrenchment has been agreed upon, it cannot be granted.


News & Updates

Zimbabwe Investment Authority

Get in touch

icon info@zia.co.zw
icon +263 4 757931-6, +263 4 759911-5
+263 4 780140-5
icon Investment House 109, Rotten Row
P.O. Box 5950 Harare