BOSSES EVADE TALKS

BETRAYED: Tebello Morodi, in yellow hat, and other workers, try to stop one of the senior managers who was leaving the premises after loading equipment into vehicles. About 86 workers were left stranded at Santini's Bus Builders in Springs yesterday . 07/05/09. Pic. Penwell Dlamini, © Sowetan.
BETRAYED: Tebello Morodi, in yellow hat, and other workers, try to stop one of the senior managers who was leaving the premises after loading equipment into vehicles. About 86 workers were left stranded at Santini's Bus Builders in Springs yesterday . 07/05/09. Pic. Penwell Dlamini, © Sowetan.

Penwell Dlamini

Penwell Dlamini

Disgruntled employees of a bus manufacturing company were desolate when their bosses mysteriously disappeared this week.

The 86 employees of Santini's Bus Builders waited hours in vain for their employers at the National Union of Metalworkers (Numsa) office in Springs.

But the company's owners failed to pitch up on Tuesday after the union had summoned them to discuss the workers' future.

The workers saw the owners packing all the office equipment and leaving without saying a word.

Workers reported for duty on Monday after three weeks of compulsory leave. They were shocked to find the bosses packing office equipment into a truck and then leaving without saying a word.

When Sowetan arrived at the company, the angry workers were trying to stop a senior manager from leaving. They were demanding answers about the sudden departure, but she escaped without giving an explanation.

Mandla Jele of Numsa said the union was searching for Santini's owners.

"We are liaising with the Department of Trade and Industry to find if they have any assets. I'm sure we'll find them," he said.

The disaster could not have struck at a worse time for Themba Nkabinde, 37, who has worked at Santini's for 21 years.

"I served the company for decades and now I have nothing to show for it," he said.

Nkabinde's 21-year-old son Bongani has just enrolled at the University of Johannesburg and his daughter Nompumelelo is in matric.

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