Workers' unions have a key role to play in making Kenya an attractive destination for investors, in particular foreign capital.
For their own survival, the unions need numbers that can only be provided by investors in the form of unionising workers.
Therefore, we believe demands from the Kenya Union of Commercial Food and Allied Workers to the existing Game Stores are unbearable and could send a negative signal to investors keen on setting up shop in Kenya.
The union is demanding redundancy pay outside the collective bargaining agreement (CBA)—which is the standard tool for workers' compensation.
We urge the union to negotiate an exit pay based on the signed terms in the CBA.
Massmart has rejected the additional pay demands, arguing it is cash-strapped and cannot afford the union’s demands.
This troubled business position, which has seen it absorb losses during the retailer's seven-year stay in Kenya, has triggered its exit from the country.
The unions must not look to profit from the exit.
Any push for terms outside the CBA will send a signal to investors that business partners in Kenya have little regard for agreements