Business came to a standstill in Limbe, a business hub in Malawi’s commercial city of Blantyre on Monday after shop assistants went berserk and forcibly closed shops demanding better wages from their employers and conditions of service from their employers.
The workers are demanding 27.7 percent salary increment.
The employees, who carried on their protest peacefully, went around to ensure that no shop is open while at the same time forcing the adamant owners to close their shops.
“Foreign nationals who own these shops are still paying inrevised salaries. We wantr people to be treated fairly ,” said Christopher Maliro the secretary for the workers.
Representatives of Limbe shop owners were not readily available but Malawians of Asian origin have reportedly been meeting to discuss the situation.
The shop assistants targeted shops owned by Malawians of Asian origin and foreigners such as Chinese, Nigerians whom they accused of depriving workers of decent wages despite making “hefty” profits from their businesses.
They chanted: “Situkufuna ndalama zonyenyekanyenyeka” and “Ndalama ndiwanu, dziko ndiwathu” as they moved from one shop to another ambushing shop owners and forcing them to close shops.
The shop assistants have vowed to fight on until their demands are met amid the rising cost of living.