Home » General » Lunar Chickens Flushes Out Ghost Workers

A labour dispute has erupted at Lunar Chickens, owned by former Reserve Bank Governor Dr Gideon Gono, with management saying it is flushing out “ghost workers” improperly hired by a now sacked manager.The affected people yesterday gathered outside the Borrowdale, Harare abattoir facility — known as Slaughter Land — demanding what they said were outstanding payments of up to US$900 and dating back six months. Lunar Chickens operations manager Mr Weston Zimunya said they were restructuring the business and this had affected some workers.

“Just like other companies we have our own problems and we have permanent staff and casual and contract labourers we call for a week and so forth and you can expect them to be disgruntled after being laid off,” he said.

When The Herald arrived at Lunar Chickens in Borrowdale, about 20 workers were gathered outside the plant, some of whom said they had been protesting non-payment of salaries since morning.

“We earn around US$150 per month and we have not been paid for a long time. The majority of us have not been paid for up to six months,” a disgruntled worker said.

Another worker said: “We refused to slaughter 6 000 chickens and as you can see they are there since morning.”

But Dr Gono said, “I am carrying out a restructuring of the company . . . part of this refocusing of the business has involved some auditing and the auditing of the division called Slaughter Land revealed that there were some ghost workers.

“The ghost workers didn’t have ID numbers and could not testify as when and where they worked. It’s against this background that anybody who didn’t have an ID number in our system or even say who their manager or supervisor was, or what exactly they were doing that we had to interrogate them further.

“We are finding out that some of these people were relatives and friends of a manager who we have since sacked. It is thus impossible to pay these people.”

Lunar Chickens, formed in 2007, is a highly-integrated chicken company with breeders and hatcheries.

Source : The Herald