Wednesday, April 8, 2015


Resultado de imagem para pepsi cola maputoThe Mozambican Labour Ministry has warned that a strike by about 50 workers of the Pepsi-Cola soft drinks factory in the southern city of Matola is “illegal”.A statement issued by the Ministry claims that the workers, who have been on strike since 1 April, did not follow the procedures necessary when calling a legal strike. The workers did not send any written communication of the strike, either to their employer, or to the provincial labour directorate. Such advance notice must be given at least five days before the start of any strike. The workers also made no provision to maintain “minimum services” at the factory.The strikers are demanding a 40 per cent wage rise, and base this demand on the enormous gap they claim exists between wages paid to Mozambican workers and to foreigners for doing the same work. Negotiations are currently under way between the company and the strikers, and are being mediated by Labour Ministry bodies, namely the General Inspectorate of Labour (IGT), and the Maputo Provincial Labour Mediation and Arbitration Centre (CEMAL).The Ministry statement urged the strikers to return to work on Wednesday, warning that continued disruption of production might make it impossible for the company to pay a wage increase.The workers claim that most of the foreigners working at Pepsi-Cola are in the country illegally, but even so enjoy better conditions than the Mozambicans.One striker, Ricardo Junior, told the Maputo daily “Noticias” that while a Mozambican machine operator earns about 9,000 meticais (260 US dollars) a month, a foreigner doing the same job receives almost 75,000 meticais a month, plus a food, transport and accommodation allowance of 10,000 meticais a week. He also alleged that when labour inspectors visit the factory, the foreign workers hide “because they are in an illegal situation”.

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