WALVIS BAY - The Trade Union Congress of Namibia (Tucna) wants the provision of housing, severance payments and working hours, including of security guards, to be revisited.
The union and its affiliated member union leaders are currently busy scrutinising the Labour Act of 2007, which is up for amendment next year.
The union leaders are of the opinion that the current Labour Act has too many loopholes and does not speak entirely to workers’ rights.
Tucna president Paulus Hango said his union wants the age of employment to be changed from 14 to 16, as no child should be allowed to work at all.
They also want ordinary working hours of security guards to be changed from the current 12 hours to nine.
“Compassionate leave days should also be increased from five to 12 [days]. Family responsibility or parental leave of 10 days per year should be introduced. Five more annual leave days should be added to the current leave days and employees should not be forced to take leave when their companies close,” he said.
“In fact such days should be shared between employers and workers.”
According to Hango, accrued leave days should also be paid out and compassionate leave days increased to at least 10 a year. The union wants maternity leave to be increased to six months on full basic salary.
Hango added that subsection 28 of the Act, which deals with the provision of housing allowance, should also be made applicable to all employees instead of only being applicable to those that are required to live at their employer’s premises, as stipulated in the current Act.
“Transport allowance should also be added as a basic condition of employment
He also suggested that Section 48 of the Labour Act, dealing with victimisation, be strengthened in terms of workers that return after being unfairly dismissed from work.
According to Hango, these are just some of the issues they want to be addressed and amended so that the Labour Act can become a more progressive working tool for both employees, employers and government.
He added that the current Labour Act does not serve the best interest of workers.