The National Minimum Wage Bill is now with the Department of Labour to be redrafted with public input agreed to by the Portfolio Committee on Labour.
The committee’s acting chairperson Sharome van Schalkwyk said that the department will now take time to rework the Bill for submission again to the committee.
“This piece of legislation is critical in our country, not only in fighting inequality, but also addressing abuse of the vulnerable workers in some sectors,” she said.
This past week, the committee deliberated on the Bill clause by clause and made changes, taking into consideration the input received during public hearings.
Van Schalkwyk says this legislation will change the lives of the vulnerable for a long time, and added that it must be close to perfection when it is tabled before the National Assembly.
“The committee had demonstrated commitment when dealing with this piece of legislation and members had shown maturity in expressing their positions on the matter. This was solely intended to protect the most exploited workers in the country,” said Van Schalkwyk.
She added that the legislation will not take away the right to strike, as is often claimed, and the suggested minimum R20 per hour amount was a starting figure that would be reviewed yearly.