Employees of Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB) South Sudan branch are a disgruntled bunch.
In a statement signed by MP Mayeng Deng and dated June 9, the staff have complained of poor working conditions.
“The South Sudanese working in the Bank have complained about the manner in which they are treated by the management of KCB SS-Ltd and that of the KCB Groups located in Nairobi, Kenya. They have tried on several occasions to seek the audience of concerned national institutions, but to no avail, with suspicions being that the senior bank managers in Juba have compromised some of the approached government officials,” said Mr Deng in part.
They have complained of poor pay compared to what is paid to their colleagues in the region.
In the letter seen by Kahawa Tungu, the staff said there was too much disparity in payment of staff, for instance the MD pockets approximately 16,000 USD, and a South Sudanese who is Head of Business and also the principal assistant to the MD make at least 1,700 USD.
“The least paid foreign worker, who is an Assistant Manager, is paid more than the Principal Assistant. It should be noted that KCB SS-Ltd made a profit of 3.7 billion SSP in 2021 against a target of 1.7 billion SSP,” they lamented.
They also complained about a sinister plot to phase out those who have experience in a bid to retain foreign expatriates as senior staff.
“Out of 10 senior heads of Departments only the Head of Business ( the Principal Assistant of the MD) is a South Sudanese, the rest are regional staff,” they continued.
Also a source of contention was a poorly values pension scheme.
According to the employees, there is a serious glaring disparity between the amount of pension allocated to regional staff versus their South Sudanese counterparts.
The South Sudanese are intentionally denied their rightful amounts. For instance, a South Sudanese who has worked for fourteen years takes home SSP 400,000.
The lender has also been accused of bullying, intimidating and abusing its staff.
Mr Deng claimed employees are always met with insults and intimidations whenever they present their grievances.
Others have faced disciplinary panels and many have been fired later. A number have received warnings in form of severe reprimand
As for females who report cases of sexual harassment, the bank apparently pays very little attention to their grievances.
“The Bank has instead punished one of the victims instead of according her the sympathy she deserves,” the legislator stated.
The bank must promptly unify the salaries of every employee without preference or discrimination, the lawmakers have demanded.
Additionally, they want the bank to be transparent about how it feels about sexual harassment and how it protects its most vulnerable clients and workers.
In addition, the MPs want the bank to pledge to implementing the Labor Act’s requirements regarding the number of foreign expatriates and the local employees’ succession plan.