A group of disgruntled workers have come out to expose a rogue employer who turned on them after they won a corporate case against the company.
Speaking exclusively to cnyakundi.com, one of the affected employees divulged how the management at Kartasi Industries Limited acted in contravention to recommendations by the State Department for Labour in regards to a job termination dispute filed on their behalf by the Kenya Union of Printing, Publishing, Paper Manufacturers & Allied Workers (KUPRIPUPA).
As per the verdict issued by the state agency on 22nd March 2021, Kartasi Ltd was directed to reimburse more than 100 long-serving workers who had been irregularly laid off after forcefully signing some shoddy 3-month fixed-term contracts that later expired and were never to be renewed.
This was opposed to their Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) signed 2019 in which Clause 30 on ‘Contract Employees’ was modified to include the stipulation that the new terms would be effected on all future contracts.
In November 2019, Kartasi Limited CEO Jacquiline Mugo is reported to have held a meeting with some staff members and informed them that by June the following year (2021) there would be changes because the management preferred procuring the services of contract employees.
At the time, KUPRIPUPA had recruited all unionable workers across all the categories and so they were all to be covered without discrimination.
However, the management failed to implement the agreed salary increments to the section of workers under the union.
Instead, the employees (some of them who had served for over 10 years) were all terminated through an SMS sent to their phones.
None of them was issued with a written termination letter.
In view of these findings, the State Department for Labour, therefore, recommended that all employees who had signed their fixed-term contracts AFTER the parties agreed on the modification of ‘Clause 30’ on ‘Contract Employees’ to be fully paid as per the current CBA.
Additionally, for all others who signed their contracts before the CBA, the Kartasi Limited management was directed to award them appropriate termination payment to appreciate the years that they served the company, depending on the duration each served.
For those served for 1 to 5 years, they were to receive a reimbursement equal to one month’s salary, a two month’s salary for 5 to 10 years, four months’ salary for 10 to 20 years and a six months salary for those exceeding 20 years.
This brought a huge sigh of relief to the afflicted staff, finally, they had found reprieve for their struggles.
But little did they know that their win was only the beginning of more tribulations.
Following the directive by the State Department for Labour, the paper manufacturing firm turned its back on the employees.
According to our source, the HR manager Grace Kaome at Kartasi made it categorically clear that they would not get a penny.
To make their threat true, the firm hired new staff to replace them.
The current word on the ground is that the trade union (KUPRIPUPA) officials were compromised through brown envelopes sent by Kartasi.
The Head of the union, one Mr Rajabu has been described as a selfish broker who does not care about workers.
So notorious that he is known to personally collect the bribes sometimes.
In fact, even his juniors have been quoted gleefully boasting of how their boss “already ate” so “nothing will be done”.
Check out the full judgement as shared by our source below.
Employees in Kenya would wish to see the COTU boss address the social and economic difficulties they are facing as a result of the pandemic but unfortunately, the egocentric, self-proclaimed Luhya Kingpin Francis Atwoli is busy politicking as the working class continues to suffer.
Young people are being pushed to their limits by frustrations due to joblessness and economic hard times.
They are hopeless and despondent.
Workers want the run-away corruption contained.
They want better working conditions, safety and security in their workplaces.
And if he can no longer do this job, Atwoli needs to retire as soon as today.
He has sold out and been captured by the State.
The vibrant workers’ union has been transformed to a parastatal and workers are just but slaves of the inconsequential organization.
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