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Sony Sugar workers down tools over delayed salaries

More than 2,000 Sony Sugar company workers on
More than 2,000 Sony Sugar company workers on Monday downed tools over unpaid salaries. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

More than 2,000 Sony Sugar company workers on Monday downed tools over unpaid salaries.

They held demonstrations in Awendo, Migori County demanding close to Sh100 million in salary arrears.

Kenya Union of Sugarcane Plantation and Allied Workers Deputy Secretary General John Ogutu said the management had failed to pay workers for the past three months.

“The casual workers have not received salaries for three months (January, February and March) while permanent workers are yet to receive February and March salaries,” Mr Ogutu said.

The workers, in a letter by Mr Ogutu dated March 23, 2019, issued a seven-day strike notice to the company.

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"We are officially on strike as from today and all workers, whether on contract or permanent be informed that you will only return to work, when the management pays us," reads the letter. The union boss further stated that the company was yet to address issues raised by the workers, adding that they would ensure all services are paralysed if the money is not wired into their accounts.

Antoinette Natemo, the union’s committee member, said they had approached the management to address the salary issues but nothing was forthcoming. “We tried talking to the management on several occasions but they have failed to comply. The workers are suffering because they have bills to pay and children to educate,” said Mrs Natemo.

Initially, a deal reached to have the salaries paid by April 5 and 18 respectively was not honoured, said Mr Ogutu.

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