Tuskys in fresh plan to fire staff


Tuskys in fresh plan to fire staff
File Photo of Tuskys on Kenyatta Avenue.

In Summary

  • The new layoffs have been disclosed in a court petition by the Kenya Union of Commercial Food and Allied Workers (KUCFAW) where it is seeking orders to restrain the retailer from declaring 80 of its member’s redudant.
  • In February, retailer Tuskys fired part of its staff following a major restructuring of its structure which saw changes to various departments. The retailer did not however disclose the number of affected staff.
  • Tuskys is at present under an ongoing probe by the Competition Authority of Kenya (CAK) for potential buyer power abuses as it holds back funds owed to suppliers.

Retailer Tuskys is in a fresh plan to fire staff, barely four months since a recent round of layoffs in February.

The new layoffs have been disclosed in a court petition by the Kenya Union of Commercial Food and Allied Workers (KUCFAW) where it is seeking orders to restrain the retailer from declaring 80 of its member’s redudant.

“That pending hearing and determination of this matter, this honourable court be pleased to issue and order restraining the respondent from declaring eighty unionisable employees redudant for reasons related to the Covid-19 pandemic,” read the application by the union to the employment and labour relations court dated June 19.

The union is further seeking orders to compel Tuskys to lay bare the selection criteria deployed in the redundancy process and observe the last in first out (LIFO) criteria in the selection of employees to be affected.

In February, retailer Tuskys fired part of its staff following a major restructuring of its structure which saw changes to various departments.

The retailer did not however disclose the number of affected staff as it now stays mute on queries on its very own continuity as it faces up to hefty and unpaid supplier bills.

Supplier bills

Tuskys is at present under an ongoing probe by the Competition Authority of Kenya (CAK) for potential buyer power abuses as it holds back funds owed to suppliers.

Tuskys has continued to blame its woes on Covid-19 having further temporarily closed three stores in Nairobi, Mombasa and Kitale sighting low customer footfalls.

The CAK is on its part seeking to force Tuskys to pay up its debt to suppliers and further contradicts the retailer’s attribution of its woes to the ensuing pandemic.

“No retailer has tendered any document to the Authority indicating that their current status has been occasioned by the Covid-19 pandemic. However, the documents under the custody of the Authority indicate that most of the outstanding payments date back pre Covid-19,” CAK Director General Wang’ombe Kariuki told Citizen Digital last week.

The probe by CAK comes as Kenyans raise key questions over the continuity of the leading retailer with some observing stock outs in stores.

Tuskys management has however stayed mute to queries with multiple attempts by Citizen Digital to reach CEO Daniel Githua hitting a wall.

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Story By Kepha Muiruri
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