Agribusdev protest 'illegal'

17 September 2019 | Labour

Agribusdev has described the actions of its workers, who demonstrated in Rundu over unpaid salaries, as illegal.

Agribusdev managing director Petrus Uugwanga said the employees were not granted permission to participate in a demonstration during working hours. Uugwanga argues that the employees and the Namibia Farm Workers Union (Nafwu), which championed yesterday's protest, should have informed Agribusev of their plan to demonstrate.

Uugwanga further argued that no declaration of unresolved dispute was registered by the office of the labour commissioner, which therefore made the protest illegal.

“The action taken by the employees of absenting themselves from work without approval is illegal and hence it must be clear that what they are currently busy with can be construed to be an illegal strike,” Uugwanga said.

“The consequences of engaging in an illegal strike shall be understood by all employees and I expect the union to know better. There is established law and institutions through which these types of disputes shall be handled.”

In a petition handed over to Kavango East regional governor Samuel Mbambo, the workers listed a number of grievances. They claimed that Agribusdev does not pay their salaries on time. Some are still waiting for their August salaries while others fear that they are not likely to be paid at the end of this month.


The workers also complained that they have not received any salary increases for a number of years and that they are struggling to feed their families.



“Since we started working for Agribusdev, we have been getting the same salary ever since, no promotion is taking place in Agribusdev,” the petition reads.



The workers further alleged that Agribusdev has been diverting their income tax and Social Security contributions.


“We found out that the money that is supposed to be paid to Social Security and Inland Revenue as tax, the company does not pay it, so Inland Revenue tells us that we owe the ministry while our payslips shows that they deducted the money,” the petition read.


Uugwanga admitted that the PAYE and Social Security deductions had not been paid over but said the matter was being resolved.


Uugwanga said Agribusdev remained committed to engaging the union to amicably address the grievances.


In May, Uugwanga had told Namibian Sun that the company's cash-flow problem had been worsened by the economic situation in the country and last year's fall armyworm infestations at irrigation schemes.


At the time Agribusdev had not paid the salaries of its workers for three months.

Uugwanga said the operational budget for Agribusdev is about N$120 million.

KENYA KAMBOWE

Similar News

 

Employers, govt at loggerheads over salaries

3 days ago - 31 March 2020 | Labour

The Namibia Employers’ Federation (NEF) says it is “very disappointed” with the labour ministry’s stance that employers across all sectors should ensure that all employees...

Nida engulfed by mudslinging

4 days ago - 30 March 2020 | Labour

CATHERINE SASMANWINDHOEKThe board and interim executive director of the Namibia Industrial Development Agency (Nida) are denying a plethora of allegations levelled against them collectively and...

Coronavirus: Protect domestic workers

1 week ago - 23 March 2020 | Labour

JANA-MARI SMITHWINDHOEK As wealthier Namibians slam shut their doors to safeguard their families against the coronavirus pandemic, labour experts warn against shutting out vulnerable...

Strike looms at Chinese-owned Rössing

3 weeks ago - 10 March 2020 | Labour

The Mineworkers Union of Namibia (MUN) Rössing branch is planning to go on strike if CNNC (China National Nuclear Corporation) Rössing Uranium does not meet...

Samherji throws lifeline to Geysir crew

1 month - 28 February 2020 | Labour

Workers currently on Samherji's Geysir vessel, which is fishing in Mauritania, will keep their jobs, while the rest of the crew who were left in...

N$500k to create jobs

1 month - 18 February 2020 | Labour

The labour ministry only received N$500 000 in its annual budget for employment creation, its executive director Bro-Matthew Shinguadja has confirmed.“We budgeted N$500 000 and...

NSFAF fires Nghiwete

1 month - 11 February 2020 | Labour

The Namibia Students Financial Assistance Fund (NSFAF) has fired its CEO, Hiliya Nghiwete, who had been on suspension for 21 months.Her lawyer, Sisa Namandje, confirmed...

Swapo's Chinese contractors get slap on the wrist

1 month - 07 February 2020 | Labour

Chinese nationals at the construction site of the new Swapo headquarters in Katutura are to receive training on the provisions of the Labour Act and...

Threat to down tools at Swapo office construction

2 months ago - 03 February 2020 | Labour

Construction workers building Swapo's new N$730 million headquarters will down tools if their demands for a better work environment are not guaranteed, Metal and Allied...

Foreigners at SOEs under microscope

2 months ago - 31 January 2020 | Labour

The ministry of public enterprises is asking CEOs and MDs of public enterprises to submit lists of all expatriates employed at these institutions, as well...

Latest News

Mariental flooded after cloudburst

22 hours ago | Disasters

ELLANIE SMITMARIENTALMajor flooding was experienced at Mariental yesterday morning after 120 mm of rain fell within a two-hour period.The rain started at about 08:00 and...

Geingob needs support to lead...

22 hours ago | Opinion

President Hage Geingob often gets the stick for all the challenges that the country faces, but perhaps unfairly so at times.While he arguably did not...

20 000 Jack Ma corona...

22 hours ago | Disasters

JEMIMA BEUKESWINDHOEKNamibia may only start using the 20 000 coronavirus testing kits donated by Chinese billionaire Jack Ma by the end of April.The government is...

Hefty lockdown violation fines revealed

22 hours ago | Disasters

ELLANIE SMIT WINDHOEKPeople who flout the lockdown rules during the coronavirus state of emergency could be fined up to N$2 000. This is in accordance...

Meatco to restart slaughtering

22 hours ago | Agriculture

ELLANIE SMIT WINDHOEK Meatco will restart slaughtering activities at its factory next week following a declaration that the agriculture value chain is an essential service....

Dams more than 50% full

22 hours ago | Weather

ELLANIE SMIT WINDHOEK The average dam level has risen to 56.9%, nearly twice as high as last season when the dams were only 31.1% full....

Fresh and Popping – Lockdown...

22 hours ago | Art and Entertainment

MICHAEL KAYUNDE WINDHOEK As you already know, Fresh and Popping is where we share trending songs, hot out of the booth. We tell you...

Sharing hope with gospel music

22 hours ago | Art and Entertainment

MICHAEL KAYUNDE WINDHOEKA genre with a devoted community of fans, Namibian gospel is producing more and more world-class content, like award-winning Manda Gabriel, who recently...

Keeping it real

22 hours ago | Art and Entertainment

Recently, we've had some new names on this page. The response has been awesome, but I've also received some resentful opinions. Asking why the page...

Load More