National Minimum Wage Act Signed

The Presidency

President Ramaphosa has assented to the National Minimum Wage Act.

The bill was passed by parliament and sent for assent in August 2018.

The bill was tabled in parliament in November 2017.

The act seeks to:

•    Provide for a national minimum wage;
•    Establish the National Minimum Wage Commission;
•    Provide for the composition and functions of the National Minimum Wage Commission;
•    Provide for the review and annual adjustment of the national minimum wage;
•    Provide for exemption from paying the national minimum wage; and
•    Provide for matters connected therein.

The act comes into effect on a date still to be determined by the president.

Schedule 1 will also come into effect on a date still to be determined while section 4(6) takes retrospective effect from 1 May 2017.

The Basic Conditions of Employment Amendment Act and the Labour Relations Amendment Act have also been signed by the president.

The Basic Conditions of Employment Amendment Act aims to:

•    substitute and insert certain definitions;
•    provide for daily wage payments applicable to certain employees;
•    repeal certain provisions dealing with sectoral determinations and to disestablish the Employment Conditions Commission;
•    extend the jurisdiction of the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration;
•    extend the provisions for monitoring and enforcement by the labour inspector;
•    include enforcement of the provisions of the National Minimum Wage Act, 2018, the Unemployment Insurance Act, 2001 and the Unemployment Insurance Contributions Act, 2002;
•    provide for claims for underpayment;
•    provide for transitional arrangements;
•    regulate sectoral determinations currently in force;
•    strengthen collective bargaining in respect of the sectors regulated by those sectoral determinations; and
•    provide for matters connected therewith.

The act will come into effect immediately after the National Minimum Wage Act comes into force.

The Labour Relations Amendment Act intends amending the Labour Relations Act so as to:

•    Provide criteria for the minister before the minister is compelled to extend the collective agreement as contemplated in the act;
•    Provide for the renewal and extension of funding agreements;
•    Provide for picketing by collective agreement or by determination by the commission in terms of picketing regulations;
•    Provide for the classification of a ratified or determined minimum service;
•    Extend the meaning of ballot to include any voting by members that is recorded in secret;
•    Provide for the independence of the Registrar and the Deputy Registrar;
•    Provide for an advisory arbitration panel;
•    Provide for an advisory arbitration award;
•    Provide for transitional provisions; and
•    Provide for matters connected therewith.

The act will come into force on a date still to be determined by the president.

In addition to the three related labour acts, the Labour Laws Amendment Act has also been assented to.

The private member’s bill proposing paternity leave for fathers was tabled at the end of 2015.

It was drawn up by the African Christian Democratic Party’s (ACDP) Cheryllyn Dudley.

At the end of 2016, the proposed legislation was changed from a private member’s bill to a bill.

The act seeks to introduce amendments to the Basic Conditions of Employment Act and the Unemployment Insurance Act.

The Labour Laws Amendment Act aims to:

•    amend the Basic Conditions of Employment Act, 1997, so as to insert new definitions;
•    correct an obsolete reference to an Act;
•    provide for parental, adoption and commissioning parental leave to employees;
•    provide that a collective agreement may not reduce an employee’s entitlement to parental, adoption or commissioning parental leave;
•    amend the Unemployment Insurance Act, 2001, so as to provide for the right to claim parental and commissioning parental benefits from the Unemployment Insurance Fund;
•    provide for the application for, and the payment of, parental and commissioning parental benefits from the Unemployment Insurance Fund;
•    correct an obsolete reference to an Act;
•    provide that the number of contributors to whom parental and commissioning parental benefits were paid and the amount of such payments be included in the written report from the Director-General to the Minister; and
•    provide for matters connected therewith.

The act comes into effect on a date still to be determined by the president.

Sabinet Cape Town Office

Related legislation: