Today's Labour News

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earningsBL Premium reports that unions said on Wednesday that the 3.8% national minimum wage (NMW) increase that was gazetted by the government on Monday was an affront to workers.  

The increase, which comes into effect on 1 March, is much lower than the 5% recommended by the National Minimum Wage Commission and has elicited an angry reaction from organised labour.  The 3.8% increase will take the national minimum wage to R20.76 an hour, which translates to an increase of R6.08 per day, and R121.60 per month.  Labour formations argued it was much less than the prevailing 4.5% inflation, and dismissed the notion advanced by employers that it would lead to job losses.  In January 2019, the R20 per hour national minimum wage came into effect, amid much pushback from employers who said they could not afford it.  They argued then that it would lead to huge jobs cuts.  Labour relations chief director at the department of employment & labour, Thembinkosi Mkhaliphi, said they were working with Stats SA to determine what effect the minimum wage has had on jobs.  Labour federation Fedusa said on Wednesday it was outraged by the increase, which it labelled unjustifiable.  Cosatu said they are disappointed with the increase and lashed out at the commission for doing “shoddy work” on the matter.  Nactu president Pat Mphela said:  “We are very much disappointed because it’s not an increase, it’s below inflation.  It’s [spitting] in the face of workers.  There is totally no increase."

  • Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Luyolo Mkentane at BusinessLive (paywall access only)

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