Ni Komang Erviani , The Jakarta Post , Denpasar | Sat, 11/22/2008 12:50 PM | Bali
Some 109 former employees of Contiki Resort Bali, a recently disbanded 133-room hotel on Jl. Abimanyu in Seminyak, have accused the resort’s owners of improperly laying them off as part of a management shake-up.
The mass lay-off began on Oct. 25, when the owners of Contiki declared the resort was losing money and had to be shut down.
On Nov. 1, Mount Banten bought the rights to the resort, but, according to a number of sacked workers, refused to re-hire the incumbent employees.
Mount Banten changed the name of the resort, which had been in operation since 1989, to The Breezes Resort and Spa, and only re-hired several top-level management staff.
The mass lay-off was reported to the Badung Manpower Agency on Wednesday, with the laid-off workers accusing both Contiki and Mount Banten of cheating them out of their pensions and being dishonest about the former enterprise’s financial situation.
Head of the Contiki Resort Bali workers union, Wayan Widastra, criticized the management’s treatment of its long-serving employees — most of whom had worked at Contiki for 18 years — and demanded Mount Banten re-hire all of the laid-off workers.
“All we want is to get back to work again,” he said.
“If they refuse to consider the time we’ve spent working for them, then we at least demand our pension money, as stipulated by the law.”
Putu Satyawira, head of the Badung Tourism Workers Union, who accompanied the laid-off workers, questioned the true state of Contiki’s financial status, citing that an independent audit report had not been conducted.
“As per Law No. 13/2008 on Manpower, a company that is operating at a loss must produce an audit report,” Satyawira said.
“So where is this audit that says Contiki was losing money?”
Satyawira said he hoped the management would show goodwill and rehire the fired workers, adding that the situation would only increase Bali’s unemployment rate.
“This big of a lay-off will increase the unemployment rate, which will only burden the regional government,” he said.
Nengah Subagja, head of industrial relations and manpower supervision at the Badung Manpower Agency, said he promised to prevent the mass lay-off by keeping the mediation process between the two sides open.
“We managed to arrange a meeting between all parties this Wednesday, but no agreement has been made,” he said.
Martinelly, assistant manager of The Breezes Resort and Spa, said her company had little knowledge of the lay-offs as the new company was being operated separately from Contiki.
“We’re a new company, it’s just a coincidence that we’re residing in the same property. Even the management is all new people,” she said, adding that the hotel had no obligation to assist the former company’s staff.
She said her hotel had allowed the laid-off workers to apply for jobs at The Breezes Resort and Spa, adding that while only 20 had applied, 16 of them had been hired.
“We actually gave former Contiki employees priority in our hiring process before opening the hiring process to the public,” she said.
“But no one really responded.”