Telkom Kenya has downplayed allegations that it is set to retrench approximately 72 percent of its workforce, translating to 575 employees, ahead of its planned merger with Airtel Kenya.
According to a news report by Capital FM, the telco’s Enterprise Division Managing Director Kris Senanu acknowledged that there would be a significant reduction in the number of its workforce ahead of the merger but the exact number of employees who will be let go is still unknown.
“In the next two weeks, we will confirm the number of people we will be letting go, but it will not be 575,” Mr. Senanu is quoted as saying by Capital FM.
Mr. Senanu similarly revealed in the Capital FM report that the firm’s employees had no qualms with the planned merger with Airtel citing it as necessary in quashing Safaricom’s dominance of the local network provision industry.
“A lot of our employees are very excited about the prospects of the merger because who wants to work for a company that is being beaten in the market, so the merger is a positive prospect from our employees,” Mr. Senanu said in the Capital FM report.
The development comes after the telco revealed in an apparent leaked memo to employees dated July 31 that it was set to offload the 575 individuals with only 225 workers set to be retained by the company. According to the telco, which is 40 per cent owned by the government, the layoff is necessary to ensure the smooth running of operations at the firm.
“We hereby give you one month’s notice with effect from the date of this letter of our intention to terminate the employment of approximately 575 of our employees on account of redundancy as a result of the intended combination of Telkom Kenya’s mobile, enterprise and carrier services businesses with Airtel Networks Kenya,” said Telkom Kenya Chief Human Resources Offficer Catherine Olaka in the memo.