Digida FM fired workers move to sue boss over Shs103.6m salary arrears

Digida FM former workers have moved to sue the popular Ministry of Agriculture Boss Mr. Ssegawa Gyagenda over the 10 months’ salary arrears amounting to Shs 103.6m.

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In a demand notice dated 29th June 2020 presented to Mr. Gyagenda by the workers’ law firm Kigezi-Opira and Co. Advocates, expresses how the workers reported for work towards the end of March and found the premises fully shut without prior notice.

station owned by one Ssegawa Ronald Gyagenda (pictured), an Undersecretary of the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries, Former Undersecretary of the Ministry of Energy and Ministry of Health
the Digida FM station owner – Ssegawa Ronald Gyagenda, an Undersecretary of the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries, Former Undersecretary of the Ministry of Energy and Ministry of Health

This left them devastated since no official confirmation was rendered to them following the station’s closure and their unfair dismissal.

“To our clients’ utter shock and dismay thereof, towards the end of March the year 2020 when they had reported for work, you inexcusably, illegally and in total breach and/or contravention of the laws regulating the employer-employee relationship locked them outside of their workplace without furnishing any viable and grounded reasons to them, you have up to date failed to honour their rights which are vividly expressed under various legislations of this land,” the notice read in parts.

By the time the station was allegedly sold, workers had taken over seven months and others a full year without payment and they were threatening not to vacate the station premises without their arrears being paid.

Due to Ssegawa’s illicit and unjustifiable behaviours, damages and psychological torture caused to his workers he is being held liable for the unfair termination of their contracts and deliberate refusal to remit their statutory deductions to NSSF.

Therefore, workers have jointly instructed the lawyers to demand him to pay Shs 103.6m salary arrears covering 10 months of their service period at the time of termination.

In addition, he has been ordered to pay Shs 35m as damages resulting from illegal withholding of his workers’ salaries and unfair termination of their contracts.

Ssegawa has been instructed to clear the above sums of money on a zero-hour of 3 days with 10.3m legal fees to the law firm.

Read Also: Digida FM 106.5 collapses after 8 years

Over 20 workers were affected who served as Radio presenters, producers, DJs, programmers, security officers, cashiers, receptionists among other duties serving under different terms of employment.  

By its closure, Digida’s frequency 106.5 FM had been temporarily given to the sister radio station Buddu in Masaka which has another frequency of 95.5 FM in Kampala.

Ssegawa Ronald Gyagenda, is an Undersecretary of the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries, Former Undersecretary of the Ministry of Energy and Ministry of Health has spent the last four years struggling with poor management of the station, and the series of the change workers.

Two years ago, he sold off Best FM to Capital FM Ltd and the presenters were treated in a similar manner of leaving jobs unnoticed and without being paid their arrears.

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