Protest organiser Xolani Xaluva said: “To our surprise, people from outside are being hired for manual jobs that can be done by the locals. The jobs offered in these shops are not ones that demand technical skills and a high level of education. They are simple jobs anyone can do.”
He said they had petitioned the centre’s management and if they did not get a response soon, would call together residents on Monday and shut the mall indefinitely.
Sipho Evans, legal and risk manager for Capital Land Asset Management, which manages the centre for Community Property Company, said with help from a local ward councillor the protest was resolved and tenants resumed trade.
He said the landlord was unaware of any agreement to hire local labour.
“While we do encourage tenants to hire local labour, the landlord has no right to impose such terms on the tenants. Any arrangements of this kind are between the community and the tenant.
“Our most recent employment stats confirm that about 80% of the labour force at the shopping centre is from the local Motherwell community.”
GroundUp was unable to reach ward 58 councillor Mendisa Makunga (ANC).
- This article was first published by GroundUp