KNYSNA NEWS - Twenty-six workers who have been fired by KwikSpar protested outside the Knysna KwikSpar and SuperSpar shops demanding their jobs back yesterday, Wednesday 1 April.
The workers allege that they have been fired to allow for an agency to re-hire workers.
One of the reasons given to some of the workers whose contracts were terminated was that KwikSpar was being closed; however, these workers say it was just an excuse to terminate their contracts.
Hotel, Liquor, Catering, Commercial and Allied Workers Union (Hotelicca) Knysna convener Siyabulela Kolanisi claimed that some of the workers were fired for eating leftover food, which was never a problem at the shop before.
"Even their managers used to eat the leftover food and now they are firing people for doing that.
"The shop terminated the contracts because they want to replace the workers with an agent. We requested the footage of those that were fired for eating leftover food in order to prepare for our case, but we have not received it till today," he said.
Kolanisi said they also requested to see the minutes of the disciplinary hearings of all the fired workers.
"It looks like there were no minutes taken and the employer wrongfully dismissed these workers. No proper procedures were followed and the workers' rights were trampled upon," he said.
He said the lawyers representing KwikSpar asked to meet with them on Tuesday.
"Our demand is clear, we want the workers to be reinstated or properly retrenched so that they can get their benefits," he said.
All 26 workers who were fired at KwikSpar are Hotelicca members and they are prepared to fight for them until they are back at work.
SuperSpar general manger Leon Terblanche declined to comment on the matter. "There is no comment from our side," he said, referring KPH to their legal representative, K&S Labour Law and Human Capital Practitioners director Willie Kruger.
Kruger said the march is about the dismissal of the number of employees at KwikSpar who were found guilty of theft.
"The employees have admitted and proper processes were followed. I do not understand why the union is organising a march instead of going to the CCMA and following all the necessary procedures," he said. Kruger said Hotelicca is not registered as a union at either KwikSpar or SuperSpar.
"All the processes were followed and there are signed minutes of the hearings," he said.
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