MANWU wants compliance to minimum wage during housing project

26 Oct 2013 10:40am
WINDHOEK, 26 OCT (NAMPA) - The Secretary-General of the Metal and Allied Namibian Workers Union (MANWU) has called on Government to comply with the construction sector’s minimum wages once the mass housing programme is implemented.
Government launched the N.dollars 45 billion mass housing development programme earlier this year.
It aims to build 185 000 houses by the year 2030 to mitigate the current deficit of 100 000 houses nationwide.
Justina Jonas made the call for compliance at a media briefing here on Friday, where the outcome of the union's Central Committee (CC) meeting held at Walvis Bay from 16 October to 20 October 2013 was announced.
“MANWU members and leadership noted during the CC meeting that workers, whether in far flung rural areas or urban areas, are no longer prepared to tolerate poverty wages and poor conditions of employment,” she said.
Jonas indicated that workers in the construction sector and those working on the country’s roads earn just a fraction of the profits the construction companies are making.
She added that these workers labour under tough and sometimes inhumane conditions, in addition to not having benefits and barely making enough money to pay for their basic needs.
“Most of them work unbelievably long hours for a pittance and are not being fairly paid for the valuable services they provide,” the MANWU Secretary-General said.
The union’s CC meeting also resolved that Namibia’s industrial policy should from now on involve all stakeholders when foreign investors are being dealt with.
“Trade unions must be consulted when foreign investors are awarded tenders in the country. When there are consultations between the State and foreign investors, the trade union must also be involved,” Jonas said.
During the meeting, the union also adopted its amended constitution as well as a new strategy of recruitment campaigns for 2014.