Kenya: Fairmont Closes Norfolk and Other Hotels Indefinitely Over COVID-19 Uncertainties

Nairobi — The effects of COVID-19 are becoming a reality by the day.

On Thursday, Fairmont Hotels and Resorts said it is closing its hotels indefinitely and will fire all the staff due to uncertainties of the coronavirus pandemic.

"Due to the uncertainty of when and how the impact of the global pandemic will result in the business picking up in the near future, we are left with no option but to close down the business indefinitely," a memo to staff signed by the Country General Manager, Mehdi Morad, said.

All major hotels in Kenya remain closed temporarily since March when flights were suspended and major restrictions imposed by the government to curb the spread of COVID-19.

The Fairmont memo to staff said the decision to close the business indefinitely had taken into consideration various demands by employees which, the Country General Manager said, are out of reach for the company in the prevailing circumstances.

"It is therefore the decision of the management to terminate the services of all its employees due to frustration by way of mutual separation and taking into account the loyalty and dedication the employees have put into the success of our company in the previous years," Morad wrote in the May 27 memo.

Staff were advised to collect their termination letters June 5.

"Employees will be entitled to one month's pay in lieu of notice," he said and assured them of their pension.

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