A guard deployed at Southern Range Nyanza Ltd (Nytil Textile) in Njeru has accused the company of wrongful termination after he was fired for allegedly instructing one of the mangers to wear a face mask.
Mr George Muyomba, attached to Pan African Carriers Uganda-Limited, a security firm guarding the factory premises, says Nytil terminated his services after he instructed the general manager, Mr Vinay Kumar, to wear a face mask as per President Museveni’s directives.
According to the termination letter dated May 19, 2020, a copy of which was seen by this reporter, the company’s human resource manager, Ms Joanitah Nakawesi, accused Mr Muyomba of insubordination and selective enforcement of guidelines on facemasks.
“You locked out the general manager outside the entry gate while he was reporting for duty on May 6, 2020 claiming that he had not put on a facemask. The general manager requested you to allow him entry and you sort out the matter while he was inside the factory premises but you were adamant. This is insubordination,” reads the letter in part.
The letter indicated that although Muyomba was advised to ensure that all staff wear facemasks while reporting for duty, he seemingly targeted the Indian managers but was lenient with other workers who accessed the factory without masks.
Nytil is one of the firms contracted by the government to manufacture face masks that will be distributed to Ugandans after the president announced that face masks would now be mandatory for everyone as government moves to ease the virus-induced lockdown.
Mr Muyomba says his employer had resolved to deploy him in another unit, away from the gate for a period of one week. However, Mr Kumar allegedly ordered for his instant dismissal as soon as he saw him.
“On May 6, I was deployed at the main gate and during my deployment, my boss; the general manager came without wearing a facemask. I went and greeted him. Because president Museveni had said everyone going in the public must wear a facemask, I requested him to do so. Instead, he called HR ordering them to chase me because I had told him to put on the facemask. Days after (on May 19), they terminated my services from Nytil,” Mr Muyomba said.
Mr Kumar declined to respond to this reporter’s repeated phone calls by press time. However, the factory’s corporate Affairs Manager, Mr Jimmy Mutesasira said information about Muyomba’s termination is being circulated by competitors in the textile industry.
“Ever since the president started endorsing Nytil as the leading producer of quality face masks in his different televised address, mafias started plotting against us. They are actually the ones responsible for misleading Muyomba,” he said.