Beach Hotel employees fed up
19 July 2020 | Business
Erastus Haishonga; Employees representative; “We do not want to be treated like slaves in a democratic country.”
Dissatisfied employees complaining of harsh labour treatment from their employers at Beach Hotel Swakopmund, held a demonstration at the premises on Thursday.
Employee representative Erastus Haishonga accused the company, including its shareholders and legal consultants (Seena Legal), of not following the correct procedures when cutting employees’ salaries and retrenching them.
“The company did not want to negotiate with us on our retrenchment package but forced us to take what they offered. Modern-day slavery is entrenched despite our independence. We do not want to be treated like slaves in a democratic country,” he said.
According to Haishonga, the company did not pay some employees up to three months’ full salaries, opting to keep two white employees and paying them in full. “Why should we be retrenched at the expense of two white persons? Where is the money to pay them coming from, if he cannot pay our salaries?”
He also alleges that the company has not paid employees since the 25% shareholder Peter Weinchart (a German national) allegedly forced them to take meat as remuneration instead of salaries.
“Businesses are taking advantage of the coronavirus situation. They are using and or abusing employees. The company reduced our salaries without any negotiations as the Labour Act requires. They (the company and its labour consultant Seena Legal) also wants to take 20% of the employees’ retrenchment package and only pay the money to them if it is possible,” he said.
Other demands from the dissatisfied employees include that Peter Weinchart not to be allowed to live in Namibia until their money is paid.
“We demand that all the shareholders come and negotiate with us to reach an agreement. Employers should respect human beings and do things in a legal framework. Seena Legal must be investigated. We want to know their agenda,” said Haishonga.
A petition was slid under the door at the entrance of Beach Hotel as there was nobody to receive it on behalf of the hotel.
The aggrieved workers gave the other 75% shareholder until 21 July to engage in formal negotiations.
Peter Weinchart told Erongo 24/7 that he will only be able to give a comment on the situation on Monday, when he is on duty.