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Bata offloads 106 workers

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Bata offloads 106 workers




GWERU – Gweru, one of Zimbabwe’s heavy industrial hubs continues with its tailspin after Bata Shoe Company retrenched 106 workers on Monday this week.

Except for Bata, most of Gweru’s industrial area is now a ghost town with large companies like Zimasco,  ZimAlloys and even the National Railways of Zimbabwe having closed shop in the last two decades.

Unemployment rate in the country is estimated at 85%.

Bata’s decline is that last episode of the death of Gweru’s once vibrant heavy industry.  Gweru and Kwekwe were considered the capital of Zimbabwe’s heavy industry but now they both have none.

Bata Country Manager Simon Mutisya confirmed the development to The Mirror in an interview. He said the shoe company is failing to cope with a huge workforce.

The workers expressed shock and surprise at the move and said that they were caught unawares with no plans for the future. They also said that there were no retrenchment packages for them even though they had served for up to 10 years each

“As you might be aware that some sections of the factory caught fire and might take time to come back on stream. As such some of these sections will be restructured and approximately 10 percent of the workforce ha been affected.

“Approximately 106 workers out of 1200 have been retrenched,” he said.

“We are very disappointed by the development. We weren’t notified about the retrenchment and we don’t have plans as we are approaching a festive holiday.

” The most worrying thing is that we don’t have packages after we worked for more than ten years,” said Michael Sibanda.

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