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Minimum wage Bill moves closer to implementation

Publish date: 08 August 2018
Issue Number: 248
Diary: Legalbrief Workplace
Category: General

A further step has been taken towards the implementation of the national minimum wage, with the adoption of the enabling legislation by the National Council of Provinces’ (NCOP) Select Committee on Economic and Business Development, reports Business Day. The Bill provides for an hourly national minimum wage of R20, with R18 stipulated for agricultural workers and R15 for domestic workers. It also provides for the establishment of a National Minimum Wage Commission that will review the national minimum wage annually. The Bill was adopted without amendment and will now proceed to the plenary of the NCOP for adoption, after which it will be forwarded to President Cyril Ramaphosa for signature and enactment. The report says that also adopted without amendment by the committee were the Labour Relations Amendment Bill, which provides for secret strike ballots and rules for picketing; and the Basic Conditions of Employment Amendment Bill, which enhances the powers of the CCMA to deal with disputes.

Full Business Day report

The National Union of Metalworkers of SA (Numsa) has, meanwhile, reiterated its rejection of the proposed Bill as deliberations enter their final leg in Parliament, says a report in The Mercury. Numsa’s Phakamile Hlubi-Majola said: ‘We are very clear that we reject the poverty minimum wage because again this is the government guaranteeing cheap labour. Most companies were very satisfied with the R20 per hour minimum wage because they will pay very low salaries. We know that no one can take their kids to school and access proper healthcare with R20 per hour only. We reject this minimum wage in its entirety.’ Hlubi-Majola said they were not happy with the proposed amendments and would reject them if they’re passed in their current form. ‘We have been very clear on our position with regard to the changes in the Labour Relation Act. We don’t believe that the changes are in the interest of the working-class majority. One of their proposals was that they want to force all trade union members to ballot every time they want to strike,’ said Hlubi-Majola.

Full report in The Mercury (subscription needed)