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NATAU pleads with Jooste to rescue 'terminal' TransNamib

2021-11-15  Maihapa Ndjavera

NATAU pleads with Jooste to rescue 'terminal' TransNamib
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Namibia Transport and Allied Workers Union (NATAU) general secretary Narina Pollmann has pleaded with public enterprises minister Leon Jooste to intervene in TransNamib’s precarious situation, warning that failing to do so would result in unspecified actions. This is as TransNamib scrambles to find solutions to its financial woes through a Cabinet business plan approved in 2018. 

Last week, the national rail operator’s employees held a peaceful demonstration, where they handed over a petition to Jooste. 

In the petition, Pollmann said it appears that management as TransNamib has adopted an agenda of frustrating the system – and in so doing, convincing the shareholder to enact their ultimate plan, which they claim is “retrenchment under false pretences”.

“There are sections in the company that are understaffed and need their manpower plans relooked, a function of human capital that they have since relinquished to the respective departmental line heads. This has led to the current situation where we find incompetence in critical positions because people are being wheelbarrowed into positions – not on merit and experience, but rather on favour,” reads the petition.

The petition further detailed matters the workers say are currently causing the demise of the company, stating that abrupt closure of business, such as roads operations, rail maintenance and rehabilitation have led to significant loss in revenue for the company.

Pollmann continued that staff employed since 2018 have been forcefully employed under the performance management system (PMS), without a policy in place as their condition of employment and have since been denied a 13th cheque accorded to the rest of employees in the company’s employ before 2018.

On industrial relations, the union leader alluded to faulty communications methods, dilution of supervision and command, non-recognition with trade unions and unfair practices, violation of collective agreements and standing orders, and the neglect of labour laws as causes for poor relations with the company.

Recently, in an unverified leaked document, directed to all TransNamib employees, management confirmed the company will embark on what they termed a “rightsizing process”, which will begin in earnest in November 2021 – and it is to take effect at the end of each month from November 2021 until end of March 2022.


2021-11-15  Maihapa Ndjavera

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