Eba Kandovazu

STATE owned Enterprises(SoEs) Minister, Leon Jooste, says the retrenchments of 340 employees at TransNamib in the coming weeks forms part of TransNamib’s Integrated Strategic Business Plan approved by Cabinet in 2018.

Jooste explains that part of the plan specifies that the company refocus on core business and move away from non-core activities. “This is however an operational matter that falls 100 percent within the powers and authority of the Board of Directors. You will see that they are not seeking permission but rather informing my office of the process,” Jooste says.

TransNamib Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Johny Smith, last month wrote to Jooste informing him of the retrenchments, saying it could cause the company N$ 44 042 088.37, but that the process would save the company approximately N$ 25 million annually on employment costs.

Smith says the retrenchments will include 154 employees who are nearing retirement age. TransNamib currently employs 186 employees in the non-core business unit who are also at risk of being retrenched. “The non-core departments are the likes of former road operations, vehicle maintenance, service delivery and terminals sections from which TransNamib has exited and will not return. Most of these employees are, therefore, currently being carried by the company in redundant capacities and can be considered excess to requirements to the core business, which is train operations, properties and engineering together with supporting services,” Smith says.

Of the current 1309 workforce, the company can only afford 850 employees, he adds.