Striking workers from Shoprite Kitwe branch  seated at the freedom statue  a few meters away from the  Shoprite premises
Striking workers from Shoprite Kitwe branch seated at the freedom statue a few meters away from the Shoprite premises

GOVERNMENT says Shoprite risks losing its trading licence if it insists on firing the 3000 employees who staged a two strike to press for improved salaries.

State House Permanent Secretary Kaiza Zulu said the Government was saddened by Shoprite management’s action to sack 3000 workers.

“All those purported to be fired are not fired. As Government, we have provided an enabling environment to excel and we expect nothing but a reciprocal feedback from the investors regardless of their size.

“Government is aware that Shoprite makes most of its money from Zambia among all other chain stores. If Shoprite wants to mistreat Zambians, they must stop all their Zambian operations,” Mr Zulu warned.

“They can go back if they want. They can pack their cabbages and leave our country,” Mr Mwaba said.

He further warned that Shoprite must not be surprised if Government through local authorities withdrew their trading licences countrywide.

And Zambia Congress of Trade Unions-ZCTU-has condemned the dismissal of Shoprite workers by management.

“They can go back if they want. They can pack their cabbages and leave our country,” Mr Mwaba said.

Union General Secretary Roy Mwaba said the move by Shoprite is an indication that the South African chain store is only interested in profits and not the welfare of its workers.

Mr. Mwaba has since commended government’s decision not to recognize the dismissal of the workers by Shoprite.

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68 COMMENTS

    • Give Shoprite management a 48 hours ultimatum to increase salaries, else close all there shops and bring in a new chain brand.

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    • Its about time govt got tough with investors who mistreat Zambians with impunity!

      This is how it should have been…protecting your citizens…

      There we have it…. Shoprite has been dared to fire its 3000 employees and face the music

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    • Why is government concerned about this now? Is is because of Ukwa’s new salary increment?

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    • People
      I don’t understand why Shoprites does not pay it’s workers salaries similar to their colleagues in South Africa. Is it that most goods sold in Shoprites Zambia are cheaper than those sold in South Africa? If not then why?

      For I know there is no way goods imported from SA can be cheaper in Zambia than in SA. Surely the profit mark up Shoprites makes out of goods sold in Zambia is enough to pay Zambian workers’s salaries equivalent to their SA colleagues.

      I think some big fish in government is benefiting from these low Shoprite wages.

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    • Inflation coming…..prices will go up. Shoprite will simply pass the costs to consumers. You and I will pay for that salary increase. The workers wont back down given the hefty increase given to MC Sata for two years running.

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    • Mulopwe, what nonsense is this you have spewed in your blog? Shoprite cannot drive up inflation on their own, this is being a lame duck economist. If they over price their products, they will simply drive themselves out of the market as their main competitors Spar & PnP have a joy ride through increased sales.
      Shoprite have been slave drivers and they have taken advantage of Zambians for too long. Now for the pound of flesh they have collected they will have to pay no more, no less to the deserving Shoprite employees.

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    • #1.1, WHY BRING A NEW CHAIN BRAND. THE GRZ WITH OR WITHOUT PPP SHOULD REVIVE THE OK ZAMBIA, MWAISENI AND ZCBC CHAIN STORES. THESE WERE BIG NAMES ON THE ZAMBIAN SCENE AND SHOULD BE REVIVED TO EVEN COMPETE WITH THESE FOREIGN SUPER MARKETS. OUR OWN BRANDS CAN PROMOTE FARMING AND THE MANUFACTURING INDUSTRY IN ZAMBIA.

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  1. Now that’s my government. How come Pick & Pay pays above the minimum wage and shoprite doesn’t. Botha thinks he can bring his apartheid approach here.

    Next do not renew Botha or other shoprite employed WHITE South Africans when it’s time to have them renewed. Fellow blacks can have their’s renewed.

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    • You racist…..you!! Dont soil our reputation…Zambians are loving and we host all manner of people. Racists, etc are all welcome and they will change once we show them love.

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  2. But why should government wait until there are protests to realize that things are not okay? The system is not working somewhere. The message being sent is that they will only act if you protest and therefore encourage protests.

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    • From February to October Government was busy doing nothing!
      As to the Union, statements like “… we are going to destroy Shopright and Hungry Lyon…”are self-explanatory as to “intellectual power” and cadre mentality.

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    • The labor ministry is asleep. there are no labor inspectors in this country. Every thing is on auto pilot. check with all foreign investors, you will see how Zambians are mistreated. Can some one check up activities of Titan Drilling pls.

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  3. Well, as usual employer, employees, Unions and Government politics at work. In 10 days all will be back to normal.

    I hope Shoprite being a public company should have done the right thing from the moment the anounced the minimum wage. It’s just good corporate resposibility. They need to get rid of all their management people resposible for not effecting minimum wage ..as somebody stated , how come Pick and Pay did effect minimum wage.

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  4. it is high time we soughted out these greedy investors. If shoprite wants to continue paying its workers K 400.00/month, then govt shld show them the exit door period! viva Sata on this one.

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  5. this how a govternment is supposed to act, not letting investors reap off Zambians. but look at ubusali around the freedon statue

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  6. Is that the POSA MABWE statue in the background? It is my brother who built and erected it 15 years ago..I am very proud of him..

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  7. Why is government concerned about this now? Is is because of Ukwa’s new salary increment?

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  8. shoprite should just do the right thing.something they ought to have done ages ago.govt should not tolerate this nonsense.if they have lost $1million in just the few days the strike has been on,it just goes to show that they are reaping off and added to that,they want to mistreat zambians.they can go back to south others will be more than happy to fill in.

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  9. Shoprite is a very bad employer and the govt has done well to tell them off. Retailing is not like manufacturing. What values does Shoprite add to the value of Zambia any way. Let them pack their bags and go back.

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  10. This is where I like Uncle Bob in Zim. He is no nosense where foreign investors are concerned with Zimbabweans. Zambians are left a the mess of these foreign companies. Come on Donchi Kubbeba! Do something, not only with Shoprite.

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    • Paul ubufi! Most multinationals including petroleum marketing companies are still domiciled in Zimbabwe. Even Barclays & Standard Chartered bank are still operating their despite uncle Bob insulting Blair.

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  11. That`s why Shoprite is cheap,because they pay their staff peanutts thereby making savings which they pass on to customers.Let`s see now how cheap they will be once they are forced to pay decent wages. Zambians should learn to support responsible retail organisations.For instance SPAR and Pick n pay,they implemented the minimum wage the hour it was announced. One might says they are expensive but try and understand the costs envolved.Which is why they can`t price themselves cheaper because they have workers to look after.They are responsible organisations and their few labour issues are evidence of that fact. How many times are shoprite workers going to down tools.How deaf is our govt surely?.

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  12. Good move Mwaba!
    Let them pack and carry with them the Zambian government, the two are very greedy and have only been using us.

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    • My Tribe is Army, stop hallucinating! Shoprite is a foreign company, our government is for Zambians, by Zambians. You are such a clown!

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  13. Why splitting hairs about a paltry 10 percent increment when some executive officers in govt only spend 10 percent of their time in offices and spend the 90 percent shuttling between their residential plots, attending ‘meetings’ outside the office or at ‘allowanced’ workshops out of town.

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  14. @likaki…you are right. I know of the issue at Lands where the boss is never there as we spend years on end queueing up in his corridor and all we are told is to fingure through Incoming and Outgoing Grade 12 type A4 hard cover books to trace our file records.!
    A

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  15. Was the council in agreement at first to revoke the lincense for low pay? Yakosako. But slave wage is nonsence.

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  16. Bortha or Bother whatever his name is should be fired for failing staff who toil day and night to make sure that those boers are happy…………Make our fellow Zambians happy also.

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  17. You Shoprite management! Don’t think we Zambians are fools. You can go back if you want..what kind of nonsense are you trying to show? The govt must maintain its’ stand. These abusers of human rights must know that we are not a small Nation to be taken for granted.

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    • Which abuse….? Stop buying from shoprite and leave their employment. No “leftist maxishisht” as we used to say during my UNZA days. Bwana days of nationalisation and government patronage are long gone!!

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  18. I worked for shoprite since 2000 and all we got was nothing an i used to get k 13{k13,000} per every three days worked and this time fro 2000 they are paying k70 which is a mockery!! let them leave if they fail to comply!!!!!!

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  19. Shame upon u shoprite for treating Zambians like slaves. Bota u must be an id iot who need to be flushed out of the country.Black f o ol! U are a kind of blacks dat aid the boars in deir aphathaide tendacies. Shoprite must pack deir vegetables nd go!

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  20. It explains a lot now that Govt is scared of the mine investors hence there arrogance. I would have loved them to say that to mines also rather than bending to their demands as we saw with KCM.

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  21. My president….shoprite,Game,Mr price,pep etc in South Africa are meant for students and as such contract employment.Our Zambian scenario is different we need shoprite to upgrade jobs to Meaningful ones,with Bota’s back ground he should champion good work conditions or has he forgotten hardships of taxi driving to and fro the airport.I had a chat with shoprite workers in Livingstone, they blamed Govt of not listerning to their calls but just to appear saying go back to work,double standards are not acceptable.Lets walk the talk.

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  22. It is about time people fought for their rights. way to go…….besides hunger wont kill in a day my brothers and sisters…continue with the strike. these greedy corporation make billions of profit at the expense of the working poor (employees).

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  23. One thing is real! When we had Price controllers in the country culprits who were caught and appeared in courts were always small businessmen who could not afford to corrupt inspectors of price. It’s equally the same with other law enforcement officers.
    In the same vein Big Fish like Shoprite cannot be exposed by government officials because they may have visited them but had their mouths shut upon receiving a big cup of tea and some other rich items.
    Let’s fight at all cost corruption withing civil servants if we can fast their saving actions oriented to the Zambian citizens regardless of their status. I mean every Zambian citizen should expose malpractices they face in different areas.

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  24. Best thing is tax them big time and give these poor workers some tax credit. How can a big chain store like this one pay someone less than £50 a month when they make such profits? My relatives pay close to £150 to their maids, garden boys and guards. That is excluding other incentives like free meals, medical bills etc. This is when Zambia should appreciate Mr Sata a head of state with guts! Not the previous yes bwana mentality one we had before.

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  25. Is there no system in the labour mechinary to monitor foriegn companies concerning wages? All along till a strike that’s when we have known that our fellow Zambians are getting little. Most foriegn companies have Zambians as human resource officers and these guys don’t push agendas of fellow country men and women? Cowards and corrupt, colonialized in mind and munzungu anikonde.

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  26. Just chase out these Shoprite peoples… Remember the days of our government stores ZCBC’s and Mwaiseni! At least! One whole shell with Axion… chabe!

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  27. People strike with 50% unemployment? Really? Why don’t the workers just go find other jobs? Well, they do not exist. Also – you cannot just go “get” another company to take the place of this one. Those companies have to CHOOSE to set up shop.

    An employee CHOOSES to work for a company, and the company CHOOSES to hire them.

    Did those 3000 people CHOOSE to work at shop rite? If it is such a bad deal – they can quit, start thier own business, or work some place else.

    Untill an economy has upwards of 80-90% employment wages will not increase. Why? becasue the unemployed guy will take your job if you do not want it.

    Things may not be perfect, but I would be careful about kicking a company out of the nation that employs 3000 people.

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