A work stoppage to demand for better pay has forced Pick N’ Pay to shut its stores countrywide.
The workers protested Friday morning and demanded that management revises their salaries upwards and improves their overall working conditions.
The workers have vowed not to resume work until their demands are met.
A check at Woodlands Mall found workers outside chanting slogans denouncing management.
At Lusaka’s Levy Mall branch, the workers used branches to block the deliveries gate near Kabelenga road where they camped.
The situation was the same at Ibex Hill, PHI and Kabulonga outlets in Lusaka and other towns across the country.
In Ndola, the chain store’s outlets at Zmart Mall and Kansenshi were closed.
One of the workers who spoke on condition of anonymity complained that she has worked for six years as a part time worker without getting confirmed.
She said she is paid K600 and works up to 21:00 Hours and does not receive transport allowance.
“I have been mugged three times because I have to walk in the dark to catch a bus,” she complained.
Management sources have revealed that the workers have been offered K50 salary increment while the workers are demanding for minimum K600.
Meanwhile, outspoken EPP leader Chilufya Tayali has strongly condemned Labour Minister Joyce Nonde accusing her of failing to address grievances of the workers.
“This Minister just shocked me, this morning when she told workers that, they should go back to work, otherwise Pick n Pay will fire them and they should not complain, adding that, there are so many people looking for employment,” Mr Tayali said.
“Basically, she told them off that, because jobs are difficult to finds, Zambians should be exploited and not complain otherwise they would be fired for others who are ready to be exploited and abused – what a minister.”
Mr Tayali added, “Joyce Nonde forgot that, she burnt Tax-payers’ fuel to go to Pick n Pay woodlands only to intimidate workers, who pay her through their taxes, instead of speaking for them. What kind of minister is this one?”
“Remember this is the same minister who ordered the police to arrest a whistle-blower at Horse Shoe Restaurant, today she is at it again telling off workers at Pick n Pay. How long are we going to pay, heftily, ministers who are useless to us, because they are not serving us?”
He said President Edgar Lungu must fire this minister because saying the PF was not voted into power to create jobs for people like Joyce Nonde who are doing nothing to deserve their good life at our expense.
Mr Tayali said workers at Pick N Pay are justified in their demands and this Government must protect them.