Botswana-based Choppies Supermarket has fired over 200 employees following its decision to exit the Kenyan market.
According to Standard Digital. the employees were issued with a termination letter an ordered not to report to work.
The letter dated August 31, 2019, indicates that there are ongoing talks with the Kenya Union of Commercial Food and Allied Workers (Kucfaw) for a favorable compensation package for the affected workers.
“This termination is due to the reduced business which has been running for several months which you are aware of, and the company is unable to sustain the current wage bill, noting that the business has gone down and is taking time for a full recovery,” read the letter in part.
The affected workers have been advised not to report to work even as they serve a one-month notice ending on September 30.
“During the notice period, you will not be required to report to work, but your September salary will be paid in full up to 30/09/2019 plus one-month notice. You will also be issued with a certificate of service,” added the letter.
The supermarket has been hit by operational turbulence leading to inability to pay suppliers, all which led to the closure of some of its outlets in Kenya.
The retailer’s condition worsened in 2018 when the Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE) and Johannesburg Stock Exchange halted trading of its shares over failure to release financial results for the year ended 30th June 2018.
The firm’s shares have dropped by more than 60% since last September
Choppies has operations in eight African countries; Botswana, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Kenya, Tanzania, Mozambique and Namibia, although it already hinted a possible exit from South Africa.