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Saftu appalled by reports of job losses at Edcon

Saftu's Zwelinzima Vavi says the country can't afford any more job losses.

FILE: Saftu President Zwelinzima Vavi. Picture: EWN

JOHANNESBURG – The South African Federation of Trade Unions (Saftu) says it's appalled by reports of potential job losses at retail giant Edcon.

The Sunday Times reported on Sunday that the of owners of Edgars have warned that over a hundred thousand jobs are on the line due to financial problems.

However, Edcon has refuted the reports that it's facing liquidation.

It says it's close to completing a deal which will see it recapitalised for the next few years.

Saftu's Zwelinzima Vavi says the country can't afford any more job losses.

“Saftu is appalled even the suggestion that yet another thousand of workers will be offloaded to the streets to join one of the 16,000 workers that lost their jobs in the third quarter of the economy.”

Meanwhile, retail giant Edcon and owner of Edgars says it’s working on a deal which will ensure its survival and retain thousands of jobs.

Edcon says it plans to have the deal signed before Christmas and implement it early next year.

But Edcon has refuted those claims and says all its shareholders, landlords and suppliers have come together in working towards saving the company.

CEO of Edcon Grant Pattison says the future of Edcon is one that's debt free.

Pattison says while they have been experiencing financial trouble for a long time, they are already on track in closing a deal that will save the company.

“And what we’ve made the commitment to do is in those small amounts of stores closing in the next three years is to accommodate all store staff into our other stores.”

Pattison says only a small number of stores will be closed.

“Also, the future of Edcon will be with sufficient cash on hand so that we can spend that money on fixing problems the company is facing.”

He says there will be no net job losses.