Ricochet News

National Minimum Wage delayed, not cancelled – Department of Labour

Apr 17, 2018
National Minimum Wage delayed, not cancelled – Department of Labour

Although the National Minimum Wage (NMW) bill has not been passed; it does not mean that it will not be implemented; employers were told during the NMW briefing in Southern Sun Hotel, Polokwane on Tuesday.

The process is delayed but not cancelled; employers should ready themselves to comply with the Act to avoid penalties said Mathilda Bergman: Deputy Director Employment Standards.

“Employers who do not comply with the NMW bill will be charged double back payment to the owed employee,” said Bergman.

Employers who cannot afford the NMW can apply for an exemption on the system after a meaningful consultation with employees, union representatives whether registered or not.

Bergman said the copies of the proof of consultation with attendance registers must be submitted when registering online and be provided to the bargaining council, union or affected workers as a copy of the application.

If granted, the exemption will be valid for a period of 12 months from the date of application.

“The system used to apply for exemption is linked with the South African Revenue Services(SARS), Home Affairs, Department of Trade and Industry and the Unemployment Insurance Fund, therefore it is important that you verify the information is correct”.

She said, “we have had applications where an employer would apply for 20 workers, but has appointed 50. The system will be able to pick such discrepancies resulting in the withdraw of the exemption”.

On agreements less than the wage, Bergman said the department will take into account the financial statements to check the employer’s affordability and if it is found that the employer can afford, a higher wage may be set.

The next briefing session will take place in Bloemfontein Free State on Thursday 19 April 2018.