A worker who toiled for a reputable local company for three years walked home last week with P 16. 50 as retrenchment package as Skip Hire laid off about 40 workers
A former employee of Skip Hire who worked for the waste collection company for three years walked home with P16.50 package for retrenchment, as retrenched employees complained of unlawful deductions by the waste disposal company which laid off an estimated 40 workers abruptly last week.
Employees said they got a shock of their lives mid last week when they were slapped with retrenchment letters at what was supposed to be a General meeting at the company’s premises at Commerce Park.
Inconsolable Bokamoso Mogotsi who worked as an assistant driver said when he left home that morning he thought that they he was going to attend a usual meeting with his employers as the company had been crying of lack of profits.
“I was surprised when I was given a retrenchment letter and P16.50 in a sealed plastic. What am I going to do with this money? I have rent to pay, children to feed and now I don not have a job and I need some money to care for my family when am still looking for a job. This is a fat joke,” he said sadly.
In his letter, it is highlighted that P6 015,94 deductions from P6 032.44 he had to earn. The young man was left with unanswered questions as to where his money was, why he was not warned in time about the companies new developments and why the bank did not consult him before it connived with his employers to take all of his money.
After faithfully working for the company for five years five months, Stoffel Ferris took home P37, 00. The former assistant driver was devastated that he was given that little when he was paid his gratuity.
“We started having problems with the company in January after we were told that the company did not have money. At the time we asked the company to pay us for overtime but were told that it did not make profits but rather losses. We started having meetings with the management seeking strategies to cut down costs,’ he said sadly. A heartbroken father Mogorosi Sejoe a former driver was given P63, 00. “I have kids, I am a family man. What am I going to feed my children? What am I going to tell my wife? This is unacceptable. I don’t have a problem with being retrenched if I am paid fairly. I earned P7 900, 00 per month but being given this is totally unacceptable,” he said angrily.
He added that he tried to get his former employers to explain why his money was deducted, as he did not owe a bank and neither did he get a loan from work.
“They were just mumbling that I owed them but they failed to explain how much I got from them and give me the dates,” he said.
Shine Monnaesi who was in his 15th year in the company was devastated when he was given about P3 000, 00. He said he wanted to be given his gratuity as he worked faithfully for the company. “Those people want to cheat us. When I told them that I was going to seek legal aid they told me that they did everything according to our law. They also boasted that they were allowed to hire from us in three months time but I believe they will be cheating us,” he said.
Olefile Baanane says complaining about leave and overtime payments cost them their jobs. He said after the company told them that it needed to cut down its costs to about P2 million they agreed with the company not to pay them overtimes and leaves but things got out of hand when they rejected the company’s proposal to reduce each employees’ salary by 10 percent.
“When we rejected that proposal we were told that we either agree or got retrenched. However, we were never given notice that we would be kicked out of our jobs. The management should have given us a notice so that we could prepare our families for this ordeal,” he said.
They also cried that they were not given severance benefit. Skip Hire originally registered as Javelin (Pty) Ltd was founded in 1989 and is 100 percent citizen owned. The company has grown from an owner with one employee, and one vehicle to a fleet in excess of 26 vehicles and of more than 88 employees.
The business services more 868 skips and is equipped with effluent water, water sewage bowsers.
Skip Hire’s managing director Chris Simon told the Monitor that the company was not in the position to disclose what was happening, as the retrenchment process was not yet over.
“That will not be fair for the affected people. We will update the media that it is if we find it necessary next week,” he said.