Shoprite Takes Striking Workers to Court

SHOPRITE has filed an interdict against its workers who went on a ‘wildcat strike’ last month demanding a 20% salary increase and back pay.

The strike took place on 19 December at several Shoprite and Checkers outlets at Katutura, Academia, Maerua Mall and Independence Avenue, disrupting the sale of goods and driving away potential customers.

Some managers at the Independence Avenue Shoprite outlet in Windhoek confirmed yesterday that the company has taken the workers to court over the illegal strike.

The managers, who spoke on condition of anonymity, referred further questions to shop stewards who also confirmed the impending court case.

Katutura Shoprite shop steward Wilford Mutambo said all workers who went on strike have been summoned to appear in court on 28 January.

“The workers are all back at work now. They got their back pay and some even got the 20% salary increase,” said Mutambo.

The workers, most of whom belong to the Namibia Commercial Catering Food and Allied Workers Union (NACCAFWU), went on strike without the support of their union, which distanced itself, saying the move was illegal.

NACCAFWU’s secretary general Joseph Garoeb described the strike as an internal issue. Although he confirmed that the workers received their back pay, he could not confirm the court case as he was still out of office.

Several workers said they had gone against their union’s aice because it was unfair for them to work for as little as N$400 per month.

They also claimed that the company had paid only a few selected workers full back pay in June.

“We received our back pay and each one got according to their salaries. Like some got N$800 to N$1 000,” said one of the workers.

Source : The Namibian