Looting at Royal Swazi Sun
BY NHLANHLA MATHUNJWA
EZULWINI – Employ ees of Phoenix Flying Squad, a security company that provides security services at the Sun International Hotels are seriously on the lookout.
They have allegedly been promised E500 per incident, if they catch employees stealing the hotel’s property.
The incentive to the security officers was put up by Phoenix management after it was announced that one of the Sun International hotels, Ezulwini Sun, would be closing on July 1, 2012. Supervisors are said to have told the guards that they should be on the lookout for people who would steal company property.
The guards were told that employees were not allowed to remove the company’s property unless granted authority by management.
Currently, 74 security officers have been placed at different posts within the hotels.
One of the officers who was found at the Royal Swazi Sun told the Times SUNDAY that they were told by their managers that there were concerns that since one of the hotels had indicated it would be closing, employees would take advantage and steal.
The officer said when they were told about the incentive they were happy because they could make extra money.
"Everyone is on the lookout for people who might steal," said the security officer.
"Our supervisors told us that there was fear that some employees would be tempted and steal some of the company’s belongings. We were then asked to monitor every corner of the hotel and anyone who happened to arrest any of the employees would be given an incentive of E500."
The officer said most theft cases occurred at night and therefore, their managers insisted that they should make it a point they watch all the staff members.
"Everyone seems happy with the incentive and we are all working hard to get the reward."
Another security officer said after they were informed of the incentive, the rate of theft cases that were being reported went down.
"Everyone here is working hard in order to get the reward," he said.
"However, the employees are now aware of the arrangement and no longer steal. It is a bit difficult now to catch a person because everyone is careful."
The officer said in most cases, when a person had been caught, they were taken to the security company’s office and thereafter, the police were involved.
"We take that person to the charge office where they are questioned," he said.
"After questioning, we call the police who then take the suspect to the police station where he is then charged. We do not press any charges or enforce any discipline as this is done by the police."
Mciniseli Gamedze, Phoenix Flying Squad Contract Manager, said their employees were entitled to incentives when they have performed well in their different duties.
"We do have incentives for our employees and they are based on their day to day performances," he said.
"They usually get the money at the end of the month. This also reflects on their payslips. If a person has done well, there is no reason why the company should not give him a reward."
Asked specifically of the E500 which the security officers claim was a reward for catching people allegedly stealing some of the hotel’s property, Gamedze did not come out clearly, saying he was not the rightful person to comment on such issues.
"Such issues are normally handled by Jandre Stander, the company director," he said.
"He is based at the head office in South Africa. He would be the best person to talk to regarding the matter you are asking about. Issues of incentives of employees are handled by him." Stander said the company always wanted to maintain a certain standard in order to reach the customer’s satisfaction.
"When you deal with customers, you have to make sure they get the best service and make them happy at all times," he said.
"We do not want to spoil our relationship with Sun International and that is the reason I always give my employees incentives for hard work."
He said once the supervisor recommended that a certain employee be given a reward, this was done without a problem.
"In this company, we believe in excellence and if someone has excelled, there is no reason of not rewarding that person."
Stander did not want to come out clear on the E500 reward, saying extra money given to any of the employees was determined by how they work.