Today's Labour News

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parliamentBusinessLive reports that the narrow definition of workers as "employees" used in the National Minimum Wage Bill was not agreed on when the policy was drafted at the National Economic Development and Labour Council (Nedlac).  

Labour federations which were part of the negotiations said they were shocked to discover that a broader definition was replaced by a narrower definition of ‘employee’, which would exclude independent contractors among other vulnerable groups of workers.  Cosatu and Fedusa said it appeared the Department of Labour and other government representatives involved in the legislation process had made a blunder by replacing "worker", which was intended to cover those who may fall through the cracks by broadening the definition’s scope, with the narrower "employee", as defined in the Basic Conditions of Employment Act.  The federations, along with fellow federation Nactu, have made a joint submission to Parliament arguing that what was reflected in the bill was not what had been decided upon by labour, business and the government at Nedlac.  Cosatu parliamentary leader Matthew Parks said it was "mind-boggling" that a bill which had taken two and half years of Nedlac engagements to conclude, could end up being bungled.

  • Read this report, by Theto Mahlakoana, which also examines the time pressures to get the bill legislated and implemented by May, at BusinessLive

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