KOI Cafe fires employee for insulting customer over the weekend

KOI Cafe has fired the employee who allegedly insulted and hurled expletives at one of its customers over the weekend. -- PHOTO: STOMP
KOI Cafe has fired the employee who allegedly insulted and hurled expletives at one of its customers over the weekend. -- PHOTO: STOMP

SINGAPORE - KOI Cafe has fired the employee who allegedly insulted and hurled expletives at one of its customers over the weekend.

The customer, Ms Gia Munaji Salamat, told The Straits Times in a phone interview on Monday evening that she had just met with two of the beverage chain's managers, who handed her a bouquet of flowers and a handwritten letter of apology from the employee, Rachel. They also told her that Rachel, a foreign student, had been terminated from her position because of the incident.

Ms Gia Munaji, 33, posted a Facebook video on Saturday complaining about her encounter at Boon Lay MRT's KOI Express outlet on the same day. When she tried to clarify why the stall had closed early, Rachel allegedly used an expletive and said "go away you ugly b***h".

"I was taken aback by being called names," said Ms Gia Munaji, who also works in the service industry as a tour guide and entertainer. "I want to let the matter rest and hopefully it doesn't happen to anyone else."

In the apology letter dated Oct 27, Rachel wrote: "I am terribly sorry about my actions and words towards you that day. I am deeply regretful for causing you stress and indignity over my unfair behaviour towards you."

She added: "I just hope you understand that I was under immense stress not just at work but at other matters as well, therefore I was unable to control my emotions."

While Ms Gia Munaji said that the matter was handled "efficiently" by the cafe's management, she stressed that she is uncomfortable with the employee losing her job.

"I feel really bad. She's just making ends meet," she said. "I had no ill intention by putting up the video. I just wanted to create awareness and address the bad service."

The video has since gone viral, with more than 80,000 views and over 2,500 shares as of Monday evening.

KOI Cafe Singapore responded on Sunday with a post on its Facebook page, stressing that it values "good service experiences" for its customers. The post added: "We are very sorry to make our valued customers feel disappointed and we believe we will do better with your kind support!"

 

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yeosamjo@sph.com.sg