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Amazon said earlier this month that it would begin laying off 18,000 employees worldwide on January 18. One of the 18,000 people affected by Amazon’s massive layoffs was Tom Mboya Opiyo. After being negatively affected by the termination, Opiyo posted about his experience on LinkedIn. Let’s see about it in detail.

Who is Tom Mboya Opiyo?

Four days before leaving for Europe to look for work at Amazon, Tom Mboya Opiyo, an IT professional from Kenya, was informed that the opportunity had fallen through as a result of business changes at the global e-commerce giant.

Tom Mboya Opiyo revealed his experience in a LinkedIn post, explaining that he sold his house and cars in anticipation of a move that never happened.

Documentation delays

Opiyo received a distress call informing him that the position had been eliminated just when everything seemed fine and the family only had to fly. The multinational company told him he was one of thousands of applicants whose offers had been canceled as the company was conducting an “annual review of operations” at the time. Opiyo told TUKO.co.ke’s Hilary Lisimba that he was originally scheduled to start in October, but the date kept getting pushed back due to complications with his work permit in Luxembourg. Due to procedural delays and recent changes, a new start date of 16 January 2023 has been selected.

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The IT professional said on LinkedIn,

“Well, last week I shared about my upcoming exciting move abroad. This was a relocating role to Europe with a leading global company. Unfortunately, it fell through due to business changes as part of the organisation’s ‘annual operational review’, which affected the role and many others. The organization is closing jobs worldwide and information is available online.

They started applying for visas at the Belgian embassy dealing with Luxembourg after the letters eventually arrived around the end of November. Opiyo said for the position, they must submit their birth certificates, police clearances, marriage certificates and requests to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to certify their academic credentials. When they received the documents, the Belgian embassy that was supposed to certify them was already closed for the Christmas holidays until January 3rd. Our days before the family left, a call was made.

He added,

“We had to travel this weekend so I started work on Monday January 16th and the call came 4 days before that date.”

Opiyo claims that after six months of preparation for the transfer, his family is genuinely devastated, but I am confident in God’s purpose for us. I hope this will be helpful and they will seek counseling. The Kenyan IT expert said he sold his house and cars to go to Europe after his children graduate from high school. As they adjust to the blow, they’ll have to start over.

He gave those considering relocating for work two pieces of advice:

  1. We continue and the family comes later, etc. Basically, don’t put all your eggs in one basket – something we learned a long time ago.

  2. Don’t resign until you get the visa – the process took us over 5 months – family document verification, police clearance, new passports, EU work permit approvals in Europe, notarization and document verification, etc. With bureaucracy in both countries, this is a big problem and takes a lot of time.

Opiyo concluded his post by saying:

“For me, I didn’t expect to be in this situation at this stage of my career, but that’s what life is about. Some have to experience certain situations to be an example to others. Keep us in prayer. God is good all the time.”

He concluded his post by asking his readers to remember him in their prayers.

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Mass layoffs at Amazon

For all the techies around the world, 2023 got off to a bad start. According to reports, in the first 15 days of this month, 91 organizations laid off more than 24,000 technical workers, indicating that worse days are yet to come. Then there are tons of job postings, offers to help friends and colleagues who have been laid off, and tips for overcoming professional obstacles on LinkedIn. One message in particular caught our attention: it described an IT professional whose plans to settle in Europe were thwarted when Amazon fired him four days before his arrival.

Amazon said earlier this month that it would lay off 18,000 workers worldwide, including about 1,000 in India. Last week, Amazon received a summons from the Labor Commission’s Pune office over its policy of mass layoffs and voluntary departures. In a letter to the union representing IT workers, a joint meeting on the company’s alleged layoffs in India was requested to be held on January 17. “The livelihoods of thousands of employees and their families are now at risk.

Under the processes of the Industrial Disputes Act, an employee who is entered in the registers of the establishment cannot be terminated by the employer without first obtaining approval from the relevant authorities, according to a statement by NITES president Harpreet Singh Saluja. Amazon offered its employees a voluntary resignation policy last November.

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