Almost 31 Shoprite staff members were suspended for allegedly taking tips

By Tonic Mr Lee

Approximately 31 employees at Alex Mall Shoprite had to camp outside next to KFC because they were not permitted to enter their workplace.

They were allegedly suspended for receiving tips from clients.

The suspension letter which Alex Reporter has seen reads: “You are hereby notified of your suspension from work. Your suspension will be on full pay and will be effective from 27/02/24. Your suspension will end when you report to your workplace on 28/02/2024.”

Ralph Rachidi, a member of the uMkhonto weSizwe Military Veterans Association (MKMVA), said that if employees are dismissed for allegations without proof, they will shut down Shoprite.

“If they didn’t steal, don’t accuse them of something you have no proof of.

“If they dismiss these kids, my colleague Noah (Sitto) and I will shut down Shoprite and it will cease to operate. We will rather buy from spaza shops.”

Sitto, also a member of MKMVA said they spoke to the mall security who allowed them to go speak to the management of Shoprite.

He alleged that if they hadn’t volunteered to represent the workers, the workers would have been expelled.

“The story that we received is not accurate. They only said they suspected that the workers were stealing,” he said.

According to Sitto, the suspended workers were being replaced by other newly trained staff.

“They were training new recruits to replace these ones, which violates labor law,” he said.

Rachidi alleged that the issue of tips started last year October. He expressed his concern, asking why the matter wasn’t addressed last year.

It is alleged that some of the suspended workers who have been working for Shoprite for many years are not registered and do not receive any benefits.

Our investigative journalists entered Shoprite, which was fully operational, and asked to speak to the manager.

Shoprite Manager Titus Phakanisi declined to comment, stating that he wasn’t authorized to speak to the media.

However, he let us speak to the HR Regional Manager, Pule Nkule, who said they had nothing to say as it was an internal matter.

He said MKMVA had no business in relation to their operation because they were not registered as a union.

“What is it that they want from Shoprite?” asked Nkule.

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