By Staff Reporter
ADDIS ABABA – (BORKENA) – Workers of BGI Ethiopia factory (brewery), held a day long strike on Tuesday 28 November 2023, sources said.
The workers protested when the BGI factory, situated adjacent to Addis Ababa Technical School (now Tegibare-Ed College) near Mexico Square, was about to dismantle and move machines and various assets to the Meta Brewery, which is located in Sebeta Town, the Weekly Amharic Reporter said last Wednesday.
The protest was caused by the workers, of BGI Brewery, who resisted that the assets would not be removed before the compensation that should be paid to the lay off employees was settled.
Available information indicates that BGI Ethiopia bought on 20 April 2022 the Meta Abo Brewery owned by the British Company, Diageo and obtained a license from the Ethiopian Trade Competition and Consumer Protection Authority.
The workers protested by taking into consideration the fact that the assets of the factory would be taken away from the headquarters before the due payment of their compensation is settled, according to the Reporter. According to the agreement, the company should have made the payment they deserve upon their early retirement from the company or transfer them to Meta Brewary in Sebeta Town so that they can keep on working with the company. But BGI did neither settle their payment nor let them transfer to Meta Brewery as per the agreement. It rather told the workers to retire compulsorily while the company was moving to Meta Brewery, the Reporter said.
The company, which has been enforcing the workers to take voluntary early retirement over the past one year, is expected to abide by the rules and regulations and settle the benefit payment, the workers said.
According to the employees, the beer bottle manufacturing machinery was illegally transferred to Raya Brewery. BGI moved the machinery to Raya Brewery only through the lease agreement with Raya Brewery without establishing a merger agreement, the employees said.
The workers told the Reporter that they would not return to work until they meet with the CEO of BGI Ethiopia, Hervé Milhade. However, the CEO has sent an e-mail message to the workers via the Reporter asking them to work calmly for the time being.
The employees of BGI Ethiopia protested and prevented the acts of the workers, of Meta Abo Brewery, who arrived in the morning, last Wednesday to dismantle BGI’s factory machines. BGI employees said that they would not leave the company unless they are paid the legal benefits they demanded, according to the Reporter.
Available sources indicate that BGI Ethiopia is a subsidiary company of BGI (Brasseries et Glaciers Internationales), which is a large-scale brewery and beverage production wing of Group Castel, operating in over 53 countries.
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