Employers should abide by Labour Act: Nambahu

01 May 2019 17:50pm
WALVIS BAY, 01 MAY (NAMPA) - The Deputy Minister of Labour, Industrial Relation and Employment Creation, Tommy Nambahu has expressed concern towards employers who, despite having attained the relevant employer status, are still failing to give notice to Labour Commission (LC) to submit affirmative action reports.

According to Nambahu in a speech delivered on his behalf during the mini May-Day celebrations held here on Wednesday, employer status refers to having 25 or more employees and the LC can use this notice to monitor the implementation of affirmative action at their work places.

“In some instances, some employers simply reduce their workforce or split their companies into two or more smaller companies in order to fall below the 25 employee threshold – thus avoiding compliance obligation.

This exposes workers from the designated groups who are employed by such employers to grave discriminatory practices,” Nambahu stated.

He added that it is because of the negative attitudes of some relevant employers that certain negative trends are still common in a country that gained its independence 29 years ago.

Some of the trends include the fact that although persons in designated groups, such as the racially disadvantaged, women and persons with disabilities currently comprises about 97 per cent of employees across all economic sectors employed by relevant employers, black employees only occupy about 63 per cent of managerial positions.

The deputy minster, however, added that the ministry in general and the LC in particular are hard at work in order to mitigate or reverse most (if not all) the impediments by intensifying its stakeholder engagement, workplace visits and inspections.

“We are also reviewing the Affirmative Action (Employment) Act, 1998 (Act No. 29 of 1998) in order to close all flaws which are negatively affecting the Commission’s oversight function of monitoring the proper implementation of affirmative action in the workplace.

The current proposal will, among others, encompass a provision on equal pay for work of equal value,” he stated.

In addition, the Ministry has wide-ranging functions aimed at ensuring harmonious labour relations, ranging from labour inspections, employment creation, employment equity and labour litigation, amongst others.

The well-attended commemorations were held under the theme “Workers Unite Against Corruption for Good Corporate Government and Sustainable Employment”.