August Twenty-Six Construction has stepped forward to address labor-related concerns surrounding their emergency construction project awarded by the Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture.
The project initiated through Direct Procurement as per the Procurement Act of 2015, involves the construction of 534 Classroom Blocks and 74 Ablution Blocks across Namibia, with a targeted completion date in June 2023.
Colonel Martha Endjala, speaking on behalf of the company, revealed that 97 percent of the construction projects have already been successfully completed and handed over to the client.
However, the company acknowledged an isolated incident that came to their attention through social media last week.
Reports indicated that labourers at the Swakopmund Secondary School construction site were aggrieved due to delayed salary payments.
According to Colonel Endjala, August Twenty-Six Construction responded swiftly to this situation, recognizing the importance of maintaining a positive corporate image and strong partnerships.
“Upon investigating the matter, it was confirmed that some workers had not received their wages as expected. The company engaged with local site management to ensure that all labourers receive their rightful remunerations in full. As of the latest update, the grievances of the labourers at the Swakopmund Secondary School site have been amicably resolved,” she said.
Colonel Endjala expressed the company’s commitment to fostering sound working relationships with all stakeholders and pledged to continue educating its principals on adhering to regulations and fulfilling their obligations to employees.
She encouraged any labourers with valid concerns to prioritize communication with their office as a first step toward resolving any issues that may arise.
She said August Twenty Six Construction remains confident in its ability to manage its teams effectively and is dedicated to achieving the goals and objectives of the nationwide construction project according to the established plan.
“As we move forward, they aim to uphold our reputation for excellence and continue contributing positively to the local communities we serve,” she added
She indicated that certain challenges have resulted in delayed progress in some areas. These challenges include issues such as the identification of construction sites and the need for elevated platforms in flood-prone areas.
August Twenty Six Construction has been steadfast in its commitment to engage local Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) and empower Namibians by creating job opportunities and enhancing the skills of the local labour force.
The company has actively involved local SMEs from various regions in the construction project, aligning with their core principle of benefiting the community.
To ensure fairness and transparency, all SMEs involved in the project have been promptly paid in accordance with progress payments.
She added that it is expected that these SMEs will, in turn, fulfil their obligations to their labourers.