Monday, April 07, 2008
By Chibaula Silwamba
Monday April 07, 2008 [04:00]
A BIOFUEL producing company, D1-BP Fuel Crops Zambia Limited has declared over 20 Zambian employees redundant with immediate effect. D1-BP Fuel Crops Limited is a joint venture between BP and D1 Oils plc, whose aim is to make more sustainable biodiesel feedstock available commercially through the planting and cultivation of Jatropha curcas, a low-cost, sustainable biodiesel feedstock.
According to a compulsory redundancy scheme notice for 2008, obtained by The Post, D1-BP Fuel Crops Zambia Limited intends to implement with immediate effect a compulsory redundancy scheme.
“The main reasons for implementing this scheme are as follows: the company’s strategy is to become focused on the operations side of the business. The South African office is integrally involved in overseeing, directing and supporting that strategy,” the notice stated. “The functions of the administration office (administration and financial support services) will now be performed by the South African office.”
D1-BP Fuel Crops stated that consequently, the administration office would be closed down immediately, resulting in the redundancy of all administration and finance positions.
It stated that the scheme would render the employment of all administration and finance personnel redundant and to define the terminal benefits payable to such personnel.
“The scheme is applicable to all the company finance and administration staff appointed in-country,” the company stated. “Staff will be required to leave immediately and will be paid one month’s salary in lieu of notice unless there are business reasons to agree a later departure date.”
When contacted for a comment, D1-BP Fuel Crops Zambia Limited operations manager Rudolf Oosthuizen declined to comment and referred all queries to the office in South Africa.
“Where did you get that information? I have no comment. If you want any comment contact our office in South Africa, they might give a comment,” said Oosthuizen.