Construction of Endebess-Suam road affected as workers down tools

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Some of the workers who downed their tools
Some of the workers who downed their tools

More than 100 workers from the Chinese Company, China State Engineering Cooperation Organization Company, in charge of constructing the Endebess-Suam road have downed their tools, disrupting transport activities for several hours as they demanded payment of their dues which they alleged the company hasn’t paid them, going against their agreements. Chanting slogans with billboards displaying messages that they won’t return to work.

Machines abandoned following the strike
Machines abandoned following the strike

Among the issues they raised include poor payment, which they claimed the Company has reneged on, despite agreeing the amount to be paid, as well as the overtime allowances. “We are paid a meagre salary of Kshs 80 bob per hour by this company and we are forced to work for ten hours yet we are paid for only eight hours of that, which is against the agreement we signed,” said one worker. They further said they have deducted NHIF payments from the salaries yet when one seeks medical services they can’t access, forcing them to cater for the services themselves.

The workers also cited abusive language levelled against them, and some ladies complained of sexual harassment. They said the proprietors demand sexual favours from them and if they don’t give in to the demands they risk being sacked. They all blamed the leaders in the region for remaining silent, despite the predicaments they are undergoing despite the fact they’ve reported the incidences to them, and that the leaders have been compromised by the Company’s management. Efforts to reach out to the Company’s administration over the allegations proved futile.