More than 3000 workers in Zimbabwe’s youth ministry have been laid off, as President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s government tries to cut the country’s bloated civil service and sort out the country’s finances.

In a statement, the Public Service Commission said it would disengaged 3,365 youth officers from the Ministry of Youth, Sports, Arts and Recreation on Friday, in line with a plan announced in November’s budget.

“The Youth officers will be paid their cash in lieu of accrued days leave and cash in lieu of notice,” it said.

The Public sector salaries account for more than 90 percent of Zimbabwe’s $4 billion national budget.

As a result foreign lenders like the International Monetary Fund have often urged Zimbabwe to downside its public service as the situation is not sustainable in the long run if Zimbabwe eventually like to secure an economic reform programme.

President Mnangagwa has been under pressure to repair an economy shattered during nearly four decades of rule by Robert Mugabe, who had blocked efforts to cut public salaries before being removed in an army coup in late 2017.