AMH fails to pay rentrenched workers

News-DayALPHA Media Holdings (AMH), which owns private newspapers in Zimbabwe, including Newsday, says it does not have enough money to pay 70 recently retrenched workers.

The Mail & Guardian is Newsday’s sister newspaper in South Africa and there are two other papers in the group — The Independent, which publishes on Fridays in Zimbabwe, and Sunday paper The Standard, also in Zimbabwe.

The company is owned by Zimbabwe’s Trevor Ncube.

Appearing before the Retrenchment Board in Harare on Thursday, AMH managing director Vincent Kahiya said since January 2014, the company had been struggling and unable to generate meaningful revenue from sales and advertising.

“AMH makes this application for exemption from paying packages to 18 retrenched workers because the business is financially incapable, and consequently unable, to pay retrenchment packages timeously,” said Kahiya.

He said the company was in a “perpetual” loss-making position and it had been unable to pay employees full monthly salaries on time since January 2014.

Representing retrenched workers, Cephas Mavhondo told the board that AMH management claimed it retrenched only 18 workers when actually 70 employees were dismissed.

“AMH must furnish the board with the total number of employees whose contracts of employment were terminated, the package each employee is supposed to be paid, the current wage bill, and the (company’s) bank statements,” he said.

The board agreed that AMH provide these details by the time of the next board meeting. — African News Agency

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