Durban July facing major disruption

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Sello Theletsane

JOHANNESBURG- With South African thoroughbred horse race Durban July set to happen this weekend it, however, faces challenges of not coming to pass due to job retrenchments at Phumelela Gaming.

This comes after APSA (Academic & Professional Staff Association) announced on Monday that the ‘ever consistent’ event that takes place in July might not be happening where and when workers are about to lose their jobs and salaries.

“As APSA Trade Union, we have been engaging with Phumelela which controls Durban July to deliberate on the planned retrenchment by the company without any success. Phumelela has unilaterally decided to retrench about 500 staff members claiming that it has a financial crisis, yet increased its management remuneration packages and allowances of its board members who are mainly White males”, APSA said in a statement.

According to APSA, they are left with no option but to declare that Durban July might not take place this year should Phumelela continue with retrenchment and with such arrogance.

“We are giving Phumelela until the 3rd of July 2019 to stop this irrational exercise or wake up to the reality that there won’t be Durban July this year. As we have previously indicated, behind the glitz and glamour of the horseracing industry, fiercely controlled by Phumelela, lies horror stories of abuse and exploitation of workers. Workers at Phumelela, some with more than twenty years of service to the company have no basic employment contracts, pay slips, provident fund, medical aid and are currently being retrenched.”

Added APSA: “This is the same company that cannot even account for missing provident fund benefits for the same employees that have been targeted to be laid off.”

“Those who have invested in Vodacom Durban July either by betting, buying stalls, marques, entertainment or booked hotels and tickets must be aware that their monies are about to go into the drain because of this arrogant and racist employer who treats workers with contempt,” said APSA.