By Andrew Irumba
As a random check to see how companies, organizations and individuals are implementing the presidential directives on the control of the spread of the killer COVID-19 (Coronavirus), our Spy on Monday made impromptu visits to several companies in Ntinda Industrial Area.
The very first one was the pioneer manufacturers of fresh fruit juice, Britania Allied Industries Ltd, manufacturers of household juice Splash, which comes in various flavours.
Our Spy reveals that for Britania, they took it to a whole new level, because as you arrive at their gate, just outside, an Askari (guard) will first point his finger at the location of the disinfectant and ask you to wash your hands well, after which you’re sprayed with a sanitizer.
From the main gate, the company has two receptions on the ground floor and 2nd floor; at each point you have to sanitize. Then when you move to the offices, every section of their offices has sanitizers and one is asked to do the same, giving no chance to any virus to pass unnoticed.
“When we entered, after going through the above safety measures, we were led to the office of the Managing Director, Mr. Ahmed, who took us through other prevention measures the company has put in place to ensure the safety of workers,” our Spy said.
Ahmed revealed to this reporter that they’re not using the usual sanitizer that is found at supermarket and hotel doors that may kill germs but not viruses.
“We ordered for a virus killer chemical that is recommended for factories, different from the ones being used at hotels, supermarkets, taxi parks and other places. This one is very expensive, that’s why it can only be afforded by companies,” Ahmed said.
He added that “It’s mandatory for all workers to enter the work station after fully dressing in protective gear. For us it’s our policy; you have to be dressed in full safety gear while at work. You have to put on a cap, mask on the mouth, gloves, boots, an overall or apron, and they all must be clean. And now we have just strengthened the supervision aspect. All these items are given free of charge.”
He revealed that in order to reduce congestion, they have dived workers into day and night shifts. The company has about 300 permanent workers and 200 casual workers. All these have been divided into shifts, with more emphasis put on human contact and distance between workers.
“We have so many machine plants that manufacture juices, sauces and biscuits. Because of that, we have at least 5 people manning each machine, thereby creating enough space between them as a control measure,” Ahmed noted.
Britania Allied Industries produces Splash juice in flavours of Mango, Mango Ladid, Apple, Passion, Pineapple, Fruit cocktail, Tropical Fruit punch, Coconut, Guava, Orange and flower in 250mls and 1ltr. They also make Yo-jus, Splash Kachupa, Top-up sauces, Sun-Sip and Biscuits in various types.
Cynthia Njeru, the marketing manager for Charms Uganda Ltd,distributors of Colgate, cadburries, Huddies among other personal products said all their 56 field staff and 13 merchandisers in the field have been equipped with full safety gears backed up by personal sanitizer and many pairs of gloves each one carries in their bags to cussion selves against the virus.
“We’ve not so far reduced on our staff but instead equiped them with knowledge and gadgets,” Cynthia said.
In account department, Ms.florence said they were working in shifts to create enough space.
In Wispro, it wasn’t different. Adquate measures had been put in place to control the spread.