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Serena Hotels sends all Employees on Unpaid Leave As COVID-19 Continues Hurting Hotel Sector

NAIROBI, Kenya May 31 – The Serena hotels has sent all its employees on unpaid leave from June 1 2020 until further notice in the wake of COVID-19 which continues to scuttle the hospitality sector by day and has forced the hotel to shelve its initial plan to reopen in June.

However, the management said for the month of June, the employees will receive an allowance of Sh 10,000 excluding NSSF and NHIF deductions.

“Further to our memo dated 2nd April and the separate communication sent out to staff regarding April and May 2020 salaries, it is clear that our units will not open for business in the Months of June. The situation is being monitored and we hope and pray that we are able to open for business in the not too distant future,” the firm said through a statement.

Managing Director Mahmud Janmohammed further said that a section of the essential workers who will be required on duty regularly will receive only 30 percent of their salary in June.

“Where staff are needed on a rotational basis to keep the properties serviced; the staff shall be paid for the days worked,” he added.

Nonetheless, he clarified that the company will continue providing medical services within the existing network of providers.

“It is our sincere hope that you will understand the desperate situation that we are all in and support this decision,” the statement noted.

Serena joins the Fairmont Norfolk hotels which Thursday said it could no longer operate normally under the coronavirus situation.

Mehdi Morad, the country general manager said all employee’s contract will be terminated since the company could not sustain business due to reduced numbers in wake of COVID-19.

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As of 30 May, Kenya had recorded 1,888 cases with 464 recoveries and 64 deaths.

 The dusk to dawn curfew and and cessation of movement in and out of Nairobi, Mombasa, Kilifi, Kwale and Mandera has further hampered the hoteliers’ business.

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