Africell Uganda lays off 59 workers

CCO Africell Mohammed G

After last week’s anonymous email from disgruntled employees to management leaked, Africell Uganda has taken a big decision to lay off 59 key former Orange staff in what the company described as a move to save the company from collapsing. This comes four months after officially taking over Orange Uganda. According to the company’ chief operating officer chief operating officer, Mr Mohammad Ghaddar (image above) the decision was a group decision and the reasons for their dismissal was not tied to the individual’s performances but rather the firm was reducing its head-count to cut operating costs.

Last Friday, the company issued termination letters to 59 members of staff in a move the company said would allocate “proper resources into improving operational activities.”

The company has let go of all its entire sales department, Ugandan heads of departments, key Managerial positions and other other senior positions some to be filled in by ‘expert’ Lebanese. The interesting bit is that the company has been on a massive hiring spree of late leading for some to question reasons why the 59 were dismissed.

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Our sources at Africell told Techjaja, that Mr Mohammad Ghaddar in a briefing to staff last Friday afternoon, told them that they had identified areas of potential growth for the company. He also assured the remaining Ugandan employees that there would be no more layoffs and should look at Africell as their home.

The company has had some tough times ever since it took over from Orange, not only with staff but also main stream media who have on occasion refused to run Africell commercials due to several issues.

According to the staff that we talked to, told Techjaja that Last Friday morning, some of the staff reported to work like any other normal operating day, only to be denied access to the office to go to Kabira Country Club, where their fate was announced to them. The laid-off staff we talked to had pertains, especially about terminal benefits. Some claim that the package they were given was only for one month yet notice was never issued as per their employment contracts.

The two parties will meet to negotiate further on the issue of terminal benefits and any other outstanding grievances.