Is Kartasi Industries going down?
A month after we highlighted the sad plight of current and former workers at the paper manufacturer, things at the company seem to be slowly escalating from bad to worse.
Trusted insiders have reliably informed us of reports that the firm could soon be permanently shut down.
As things stand, shareholders have apparently given out a one month notice to the top section of the workforce.
However, a majority of casual personnel have yet to be formally notified of this latest development.
Just like in the case of their unpaid dues, the management at Kartasi Limited has opted they remain in the dark.
The announcement is expected to be made official in the coming days.
You are a man of the people.
Just the other day you posted our current predicament at Kartasi Industries.
Right now as I write to you, the company shareholders have given out a one month notice.
The company will be closing for good.
But some of us have not received the notice yet they have not paid us our services.
They want to clear those who still are in the company alone. I will send you the documents tomorrow, thank you mtetezi wa wanyonge,” the source writes.
In March 2022, this blog shared how the management at Kartasi Industries Limited acted in contravention to recommendations by the State Department for Labour in regards to a job termination dispute filed on their behalf by the Kenya Union of Printing, Publishing, Paper Manufacturers & Allied Workers (KUPRIPUPA).
As per the verdict issued by the state agency on 22nd March 2021, Kartasi Ltd was directed to reimburse more than 100 long-serving workers who had been irregularly laid off after forcefully signing some shoddy 3-month fixed-term contracts that later expired and were never to be renewed.
This was opposed to their Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) signed in 2019 in which Clause 30 on ‘Contract Employees’ was modified to include the stipulation that the new terms would be effected on all future contracts.
In November 2019, Kartasi Limited CEO Jacquiline Mugo is reported to have held a meeting with some staff members and informed them that by June the following year (2021) there would be changes because the management preferred procuring the services of contract employees.
At the time, KUPRIPUPA had recruited all unionable workers across all the categories and so they were all to be covered without discrimination.
However, the management failed to implement the agreed salary increments for the section of workers under the union.
Instead, the employees (some of them who had served for over 10 years) were all terminated through an SMS sent to their phones.
None of them was issued a written termination letter.
You can read more about that here.
Just days later, another former long-serving employee has narrated how the company unlawfully and unfairly terminated his contract without following due process as stipulated by Labour Laws.
Despite diligently and efficiently working at Kartasi Industries Limited for over 12 years, Waseem Hussein was neither handed a dismissal letter nor given a reason for his sacking.
In a demand letter dated 29th June 2020, Hussein, through his advocate, argued that for the entirety of his employment at Kartasi Limited, he never received any warnings (verbal or written) for any form of misconduct.
You can read more about this here.