The Kabwe Municipal Council has fired 13 of the 74 workers who were suspended in April this year for demanding their six months salary arrears in a nationwide peaceful protest by Local Authority workers.
Kabwe Municipal Council Assistant Public Relations Manager, Waluka Mwaekwa said the 13 were dismissed from employment following a “Special Full Council meeting” held on Friday last week.
“The Local Authority has fired 13 of its Division 4 employees after being found guilty of riotous behaviour; acting violently and omission which intentionally endangered the health or safety of others. The dismissal by the Special full council follows adherence to all the prerequisite disciplinary procedures,” Mwaekwa said.
Mwaekwa said the council had no authority to dismiss employees from Divisions 1, 2 and 3 but could only recommend to the Local Government Service Commission.
“All the 13 fired workers are from Division 4 because as council we do not have the power to fire workers from Divisions 1 to 3. However, we can only recommend to the commission. But no such recommendation has been done and therefore, the rest of the workers will be reporting this week,” she said.
On 2nd April this year, Kabwe Municipal council charged and suspended with immediate effect 74 Council employees for allegedly having participated in an illegal strike action that took place between 27th to 29th March, 2019.
Meanwhile, former Kabwe Mayor, Mcdonald Mwamba said he was disappointed at the failure by the Local Authority to defend the Division 4 workers.
“How did the mayor and the councillors agree to fire these people for merely demanding for what rightly belongs to them? How did council expect the unpaid workers to pay for rentals, hospital bills and other expenses amidst this hard economic environment, when they were unpaid for six months? These are the same workers who were beaten by PF cadres at the civic centre during their peaceful protest. I feel they have suffered enough. Is this the result of voting for a pro-poor government? My appeal to the Mayor is to reinstate the fired workers unconditionally,” demanded Mwamba.