THE National Youth Service (NYS) management said the institution cannot afford a manager for Youth Security Services (YSS) at the moment.
This comes after a group of security guards from YSS went on a nationwide strike for two days demanding that the YSS manager not be part of NYS’ payroll.
More than 1 500 security guards handed over a petition to their human resource officer on Wednesday, accusing NYS of low salaries, lack of transport, late salary payments, and demanding that the YSS have its own manager.
NYS spokesperson Belinda Hamburee said YSS is financially unable to maintain a manager’s salary, hence a secondment of someone from NYS.
“As soon as YSS’ financial situation improves, a manager will be appointed under the YSS payroll,” she said.
Hamburee said due to finances they are unable to provide transport, after the guards demanded a bus for each zone.
“YSS financially can’t afford to acquire vehicles for each zone. This will, however, happen when the financial situation has improved,” she said.
Hamburee said the issue of minimum wages has already been concluded through a settlement agreement that was signed between shop stewards, the Namibia Independent Security Union (Nisu), and management, which will be adjusted.
“In terms of the agreement, the rates adjustment is envisaged to take effect 1 April 2023, subject to clients’ acceptance of the proposed rate.
“Management has been engaging the clients and we are optimistic about a positive outcome,” she said.
The institution promised that the guards will be paid on the 10th of each month, after they were paid on 18 January 2023.
“Payment of salaries was changed through consultation from the 10th to the 15th day of each month to allow enough time for revenue collection.
“Should we change back to the 10th, the situation will be worse than now, therefore, the status quo shall remain,” she said.
Hamburee said NYS is not at the management level to allow or recommend a liquidation.
“You have demanded NYS and YSS to be liquidated. You can either approach the board or court to apply for NYS and YSS to be liquidated.
“Though YSS is wholly owned by NYS, the two are separate entities and benefits that apply to NYS employees are not automatically applied to YSS employees,” she said.
NYS said employee benefits are negotiated and employees are advised to present their demands through a negotiating table.
Hamburee said the guards have been embarking on a strike without following legal procedures since Wednesday, and their absence from work is illegal.
“The management will still decide on how to deal with the situation whether they will be paid for the two days or not,” she said.
Nisu founder Simon Kandondo said he has received the response from NYS and has no comments on most of the issues mentioned.
“I can agree about the issue of minimum wages, we have signed an agreement that the salary will be adjusted as of 1 April 2023, subject to clients at the proposed rate.
“Others, I can not comment because we were not there when they were discussing on the strike,” he said.
Kandondo slammed comments made by Michael Amushelelo from the Namibia Economic Freedom Fighters for using massacre language towards the union official.
“We are a registered trade union and we are not entertaining or solving the worker’s problem in the streets. We follow the law and we do it in the correct procedure,” he said.
Kandondo said Amushelelo is misleading the workers by using his politics.
“He misled the G4S employees and left them with empty promises, he is confusing workers with politics and labour. I want to inform the members to stay away from those street politics,” he said.