Plant and Vehicle Hire Organisation (PVHO) staff in Malawi’s capital, Lilongwe, on Wednesday downed tools, demanding reimbursement of money meant for Christmas party.
The workers, who claimed were owed K920 000 (about $2 787), blocked the main entrance to the regional offices.
They said they followed necessary procedures, through the organisation’s committee, for their concerns to be addressed, but to no avail.
Speaking on condition of anonymity, one of the employees said management was playing hide and seek on the matter.
But in a telephone interview, PVHO Central Region senior technical officer Radson Sawala downplayed the workers’ claims, saying they did not understand some logistic arrangements within the accounts department.
“It is not like we denied them the Christmas party nor did someone embezzle the money. It was just a mix up in transactions with the involved banks and the issue is now under control. They will have their party and this has just been agreed in a meeting right now with the deputy director and the chief accountant, among others,” said Sawala.
He said the officials were expected to address the protesters in the afternoon.
But Sawala differed with the protesters on the amount involved, saying the party would cost K400 000 (about $1 212).
The regional office has over 200 employees.