Ohangwena NANTU calls on teachers to boycott Shoprite

The leadership of Namibia National Teachers Union (NANTU) in Ohangwena region has called on its members to stop buying from retail giant Shoprite in solidarity with the retailer’s workers who have been on strike across the country.

Workers of Shoprite across the country have been on strike, although the retailer’s shops have been open and doing business on the back of those few workers who refused to go on strike.

While negotiations between Shoprite’s management and the workers’ union NAFAU are ongoing, a win out of those negotiations for the workers will depend largely on the impact the strike will have on the profits of Shoprite taking into account that the business operations of the retailer seem not to have been negatively affected by the ongoing strike.

For this reason Mr George Hafilwa, the regional chairperson of NANTU in Ohangwena said they decided to get involved so that the strike of Shoprite workers will end in a success.

“We are calling on all teachers and members of the public to stop buying from USave/Shoprite shops in Eenhana, Oshikango and Ongenga,” said Hafilwa. “This boycott must continue until the demands of the workers of Shoprite are met.”

Hafilwa said although teachers are in a different sector they have to show solidarity with their fellow workers working for Shoprite because an injury to one is an injury to all.

“The call of workers is the same regardless of the sector or profession, if workers at retail are calling for salary increment, that is the same as us teachers also, their demands could be our demands, so that we have to show them solidarity,” he said.

“If we continue buying from Shoprite this will defeat the purpose of the strike.”

The call for solidarity has been communicated through the structures of the teachers’ union. “And teachers are in support. Their response is positive.

“Until NAFAU and Shoprite come to an agreement, that is when we will call on our members to start buying from Shoprite. For now people must stop buying from Shoprite; as long as those workers are on strike we must not buy from Shoprite.”

Hafilwa also called on local entrepreneurs “to think outside the box and have alternative commodities like those Shoprite is selling and sell them as well, because at some places like Ongenga there is no alternative; people will have to go buy from Shoprite because it is the only shop which is there; but where there is other shops providing competition to Shoprite then people must buy from alternative shops.”

In the photo: Shoprite workers on strike at Tsandi.