Saturday, June 15, 2024

Glass sheets slice 2 Rekays employees to death

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TWO employees of Rekays Building Supplies died on the spot after the sheets of glass they were offloading from a truck fell on them.

One of the bodies had its neck chopped off while the other had several cuts on it.

Rekays management refused to comment on the incident and had even closed the building supplies shop.

Copperbelt deputy provincial police chief, Milner Muyambango and Ndola Central Hospital public relations officer, Sheona Chalimbana confirmed the incident to the Times yesterday.

The deceased were identified as Whiteson Mwandiya, aged 55 and Richard Kasongo aged 40.

Mr Muyambango said the incident happened around 13:30 hours while the two and four other employees of Rekays were offloading the sheets of glass from a Tanzanian truck at the company premises along President Avenue.

“They were huge sheets of glass and when the glass began to fall from the truck, the other four workers scampered for safety leaving the two who failed to provide a human shield to stop the glass from falling on them,” he said.

He said police had since opened inquiries into the accident.

A Times crew which rushed to the scene found the police and some employees of the company removing the two bodies from the trailer of the same delivery truck
[Times of Zambia]

38 COMMENTS

  1. Industrial law has to be followed and respected. If a work is not wearing and company provided, he/she should be fired or warned. But if a company is not providing, then they are not fit to operate in that kind of business.
    Very sad of the development

  2. At 55 and 40years I think the two deceased people are too old to offload the heavy glasses from the truck.I thought the glasses should be in pallets and a folk lifter should do that kind of work.It is sad that we have lost two people in such a situation with no safety clothes.We hope our police will do a good job and we employ the owners of the company to compasate the two handsomely with no delays aba abantu died pa nchito.My sincere heartfelt condolences to the two families for the great loss.

    • ???????I didn’t like the new hi5 .!Right . I’m believe for all plopee hasn’t like the new hi5 too .!!I want to tell the hi5 developer as . Why do you change for .? I’m Expected of the developer’s reason change and remove the CSS feature for force the users to pay for remove the advertisements.Sorry . I’m a Thai plopee and I’m not a good english.

  3. Off loading of such nature are supposed to be done by cranes and not mannual. May their departed soul rest in peace, however a whip must be cracked on those Indians with out fail. I hope Minister Shamenda is listening

  4. If Dr Conrad Murray could jailed for death of a drug junk surely the owner of this hardware should at least see the Inside of a court room.

  5. Health and safety standards need to be enforced. I am sure the relevant rules are already there. I hope the company had arranged for such things as life assurance, workmen’s compensation etc

  6. The indians and Chinese are the same on safety. We want to hear the type of risk assessment they did before starting lifting. Every industry has safety standards on which it operates. That was substandard. They needed a rigger or some expert to make an assessment.

  7. No 7 Twendeshe, its a Chinese Indian! (That is a Chinese and Indian put together)! On a serious note, government must prosecute the directors of this company!

  8. This may be more of safety and health standards issue than anything else. Most likely the owners of the business do not even know what the law requires of them. On the other side government must ensure safety standards are effected in all work and related places so that those found wanting are punished accordingly. This case must be investgated that so justice can be done. My thoughts are withs the affected families

  9. Since Sata openly dined with the Chinese who cares about labour laws? I remember when Sata was sworn in these so called investors were at the verge of packing their bags at the thought of how Sata would deal with them. Today, they are probably looking back and wondering what the fuss was all about? I know as humans we despise our ego to be challenged, but I can confidently say that Mr. President you have let our country down within the short space of time as Pres. Yes RB sucks, but your flip-flops and failure to deal with issues you promised to deal with during the campaigns sucks even more. No wonder some people choose not to exercise their right to vote to avoid disappointment.

  10. Clear case of negligence and the employer clearly did not follow health and safety regulations. Those glasses were supposed to be offloaded using a forklift. But obviously the company was trying to cut corners to save money. They should be charged with criminal negligence and forced to pay compensation to the families of the deceased…

  11. The problem is if the police do not do their work properly and the emplyers get away with it, we will start having a situation where workers turn to mafia gangs to protect them and that will be the beginning of mayhem. The authrorities must address these issues very seriously. Once mafia gangs take hold that will be the end for sensible investment in Zambia.

  12. ‘One of the bodies had its neck chopped off?’ What kind of reporting is this imwe ba Times? I hope you are privatised quickly so as to solve your grammar problems.

  13. Sad, HSE (Health and safety Environment) for employees is very important. Safety of staff is one area we have not taken seriously. This is a Hardware company they should have modern forklifts for such tasks. It is really dangerous for employees. Let the owners be jailed and should be a lesson to other such employers.

  14. A few months ago, PF cadres would have been foaming at their mouths like rabid monkeys over such an incident saying it is RB’s fault. Now that you have your “serpentine messiah” in state house what do you have to say? My condolences to the bereaved families! We must ensure safety standards are improved.

  15. its not only rekays go to Gourock ,aquvita or other indan owned companies they don’t even know what safty is .Its high time Fi-shamenda and his fellow blood thirsty monkey open thier eyes.These foolish pf government don’t even seem to go to work all we hear is appoinments and uncovering baseless accusation.May some one out there please advise these monkeys to start work.Mind you the 90 days is almost nearing to an end.

  16. This is indeed an Occupational Safety and Health matter and the Factory Inspectors need to and investigate the causes of these fatalities. This is a sad development particularly since life was lost.

  17. I voted for SATAn but I now know I wasted my vote!The man has just failed to live up to his bl…dy promises.How do you dine with the chinese ,the very people who have been tormenting the people who voted you into office.Come 2016 no vote from me!!!

  18. In Zambia it only takes a fatal accident of this nature for people to see the hazards; Health Safety Laws leaflets are freely available on-line but if the are not enforced by the authorities with input from the respective unions accidents will be the norm. This accident has only come to light as they were fatalities; how about the near misses and serious injures that are a daily occurrence behind those high factory walls? 

  19. Condolences to the families of the deceased. MTSRIP. It is imperative for government inspectors to go round and inspect most companies so as to enforce safety standards and there is also need to charge some with the legislated penalty fees. It is not right for this country to keep losing people due to investors like REEKAY breaking the law with impunity. I hope Honorable Shamenda has already taken issue with the directors of this company. Family memebers, I urge you to exercise patience by demanding for a good compesation and not rushing to receive meagre amounts due to hunger. Finally, the few shallow minded condemning the PF government and insulting, must have IQs of grasshoppers to expect that all should be well after investors were treated with kids gloves for 20 years by the MMD GRZ.

  20. You LT bloggers have nothng in common but to see this incident from a RACIST point. All you can do is talk crap of Chinese/Indian business owners. Is it because their skin is not like yours? Why dont you blame our government for a lack of a system that can protect the workforce? If our government has failed us then there is a problem…and a BIG one too!!! In the past there was the sfety dept which monitored safety at ZCCM. Where is it now? As well, so many of our civil servants go without a salary for months? You cannot say SHIT about the govt. yet when you see an Indian/Chinese not giving a salary you have every reason to speak… Come on people, let us be fair. We need to revamp our Labour offices and make sure every law is enforced. Abash those corrupt labour officers!!!!!

  21. Njenje and jay jay, think with yo heads guys, what has sata got to do with this? The two men died a terrible death, may their souls rest in peace. Labour officers/inspectors shld start inspecting works places, go to rekays kitwe, heavy items which require a fork lift to lift are lifted by casual workers and are paid 10pin per day. We need to change our attitudes guys.

  22. There is need to come up with the Industry Safety Agencies just like we have Road Transport and Safety Agency or just extend the operations of RTSA to inspections of safety in companies and industries. As the situation is now, people in companies operate the way the feel like or as they are instructed by their bosses regardless of safety concerns. And when a tragedy strikes, we just complain and criticise and at the end of the day no solution is found. I just hope Rekays is a member of Workers compensation as well as NAPSA. If it is not, it should be taken to task by govt.

  23. “Old enuf” and “ZED”, I totally agree with your comments. We need to set up institutions that look after our workforce. Keeping in mind, though, that these institutions do not just become establishments where one more person can become corrupt. We have hundreds of people that die on our roads day-in and day-out and which one of you has set blame on the govt. that is in charge of our road infrastructure? None!!! So people let us humble ourselves, out our heads on our shoulders and accept the situation. Let us work together as HUMANS and not as people with different skin colors (Mwenye, ChoCholi, Muntu, Muzungu etc…)

  24. In developed countries where labor laws are followed, the business owner faces criminal charges for failing to provide a safe working environment thus causing death. But since this is Zambia we are talking about, kwachas will exchange hands and the case will die a natural death. If the new labor minister knew better or better yet well travelled, he would learn from other countries that Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) is something that needs to be implemented in all workplaces and employers should be responsible for providing proper care to all employees. Rekays management should be taken to court and charged with homicide. Again, I dont see anything like this happening in the Sata govt, no faith.

  25. I notice with interest that the usual xenophobic attacks which would have accompanied this blog had the employer been Chinese are missing. One international human rights observer got it right. There is no law enforcement in Zambia. We have laws but there is no one to enforce them. Instead of just the police taking the lead here, there should be a government safety inspector actually leading matters. In the mines we used to have government inspectors of mines. But now either that department does not even exist or cannot even afford transport to go to accident scenes. The Chinese employers merely take advantage of what they see around them.

  26. UNACCEPTABLE were is the safety in this case, this issue should not be forgotten about, these Indians should be charged, am sure the poor guys were just working for peanuts, but were a life is lost, this is serious & measures should be put in place by the PF government

  27. Rekays, Rekays, Rekays! this is just a tip of the ice berg. The owners of Rekays, Wood Processing Industries and Norzam Gluelam are the same old fellas, Patel and Desai. They care less about the welfare of their employees let alone their safety. Just imagine, how can a sane person even think (in the first place) of offloading sheets of glass sheet by sheet from the truck? Glass is fragile and hazardous material which MUST NEVER be offloaded from the truck or even transported piece by piece. If anyone thinks the Chinese are the only sour grapes on the market, STOP and THINK again. Visit Wood Processing Industries or its sister company NORZAM in the Industrial Area and see for yourself… Zambia: The Real Africa, or is it Lets Explore?

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