Ver Angola


Companies must give "objective reasons" for dismissal, says union

Companies that lay off workers with arguments of cash flow difficulties, due to covid-19, should "declare objective reasons" under the law, the Angolan trade union confederation warned this Wednesday, stating that the state of emergency "safeguards employment".


According to the Secretary General of the National Union of Angolan Workers - Trade Union Confederation (UNTA-CS), Manuel Viage, the institution has received several complaints about workers' redundancy claims due to financial difficulties.

"We still don't have any cases of consummate dismissals, but we have received some complaints, according to which some employers plan to make redundancies on the grounds that the companies are not in a position to maintain the charges that allow for the absence of an economic activity," he told Lusa.

For the union leader, if the redundancies occur, they must take place on a legal basis, because, he noted, the employer who does so "will have to declare objective causes".

And in this sense, he noted, the organs of labour justice administration, such as the Inspectorate-General of Labour, "should work with greater accuracy and competence to assess the veracity of these causes that the operators will want to justify for dismissals".

The country already has 24 positive cases of the new coronavirus, including 16 active cases, six recovered and two deaths, and this Wednesday is the twelfth day of the second phase of the state of emergency to count the spread of covid-19.

The temporary closure of several public and private institutions and companies, restrictions on the movement and permanence of people on the public highway and specific timetables for the sale of food products are among the measures of the period.

Operators from various sectors of the country's economy are "constantly complaining" about cash flow problems, mainly to pay salaries and keep companies functional, fearing "dismissals and massive closures of companies".

Economic relief measures to mitigate the impact of covid-19 on companies in the productive sector and families have already been drawn up by the government, with entrepreneurs expressing "various scepticism".

The UNTA-CS Secretary General noted that jobs are safeguarded by the presidential decree establishing the state of emergency, "when it clearly decides that there should be no dismissals or termination of the legal-labour relationship".

However, he stressed that, "it is not healthy" for there to be dismissals at a time when "there are many difficulties due to the very economic situation of the country with an unemployment rate above 30 per cent, of wages without purchasing power".

Manuel Viage also added that "it is not legal", in a period of emergency, to take measures to pay salaries half way, which, he noted, "had to take place outside the state of emergency and be the result of a consultation".

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