Today's Labour News

newsThis news aggregator site highlights South African labour news from a wide range of internet and print sources. Each posting has a synopsis of the source article, together with a link or reference to the original. Postings cover the range of labour related matters from industrial relations to generalist human resources.

news shutterstockIn our Thursday morning roundup, see
summaries of our selection of recent South African
labour-related reports.


Nxesi promises further public consultation on employment equity regulations

BL Premium reports that Department of Employment and Labour (DEL) Minister Thulas Nxesi gave an assurance on Wednesday the revised draft employment equity regulations under the Employment Equity Amendment Act would be released for a second round of public comments. The Act empowers the minister to regulate sector-specific employment equity targets and to prescribe demographic targets for employers with more than 50 employees. The aim is to ensure the equitable representation of suitably qualified people from designated groups. The act stipulates that an employment equity compliance certificate will be a prerequisite for doing business with any organ of state and securing state contracts. Nxesi told parliament’s labour committee his department and the Commission for Employment Equity is fine-tuning draft regulations on proposed sector-numerical employment equity targets on the basis of public comments received from stakeholders. “Once that process is completed the revised draft employment equity regulations will once again be published for further comments. The comments and proposals that are consistent with what the constitution instructs us to do, will be carried through to the final employment equity regulations,” he indicated.   Thembinkosi Mkalipi, the DEL’s chief director of labour relations, told MPs the final regulations would be promulgated only once President Cyril Ramaphosa had determined the commencement date of the Act.

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Linda Ensor at BusinessLive (subscriber access only)

Settlement agreement between Solidarity and government over draft EE regulations supersedes petition

BL Premium reports that on Wednesday, parliament’s labour committee dealt with a petition sent in June by Solidarity CEO Dirk Hermann and Cape Forum’s Heinrich Wyngaard, which asked for urgent steps “to reassess the legality, rationality and desirability of the proposed employment equity regulations 2023”. The petition argued that the numerical targets for population groups proposed by the draft regulations in effect meant quotas, which was unconstitutional and would result in a major decrease in minority group representation as a percentage of the labour market at the top four job levels. Thembinkosi Mkalipi, the department’s chief director of labour relations, told MPs that the petition lacked legal basis, was premature as there were presently no final 2023 employment equity regulations, and had also been overtaken by the settlement agreement between Solidarity and the government, which was made an order of court in October. The agreement came after a legal challenge by Solidarity regarding the constitutionality of the Act. The court challenge was withdrawn after the settlement agreement. Mkalipi said the contents of the settlement agreement would form part of the final employment equity regulations that would be published after the commencement of the Act. The effect of the settlement agreement under the supervision of the International Labour Organisation is that race cannot be used to determine who is hired, fired or promoted. Race cannot be the only factor in drawing up employment equity plans, which among other things will also have to take account of the pool of available qualified workers and a company’s unique circumstances. The DA opposes the Act and filed papers in the Pretoria High Court in June contesting its constitutionality and validity.

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Linda Ensor at BusinessLive (subscriber access only)


You can be fired for going to work when you’re ill, putting colleagues at risk

IOL Business writes that employees who deliberately and recklessly place their colleagues at risk of health hazards by going into work when they are ill, can be charged with misconduct and fired. This is the conclusion to be drawn from a Labour Court ruling which found that a company was within its rights to dismiss a worker who reported to work despite knowing he could have Covid-19.   While this matter occurred during the Covid-19 pandemic and involved a life-threatening virus, legal experts say the principles and issues at the centre of the case have wider relevance and can be applied in other matters. “The case ultimately underscores an employee’s duty of care and the principle that, when an employee deliberately and recklessly places their colleagues at risk of health hazards, potentially causing harm to their fellow workers, it constitutes misconduct which may well justify dismissal,” explained ENS Africa’s Jessie Gertzen and Tshepo Mofokeng. In brief, a tow truck driver was charged with, amongst other things, failing to self-isolate while awaiting the outcome of a Covid-19 test and, thus, wilfully endangering the safety of others in the workplace. A CCMA commissioner found that the employee had been unfairly dismissed, from both a procedural and a substantive perspective. Aggrieved by this outcome, the employer launched a successful application in the Labour Court seeking to review and set aside the arbitration award. There was evidence that employees were trained on the steps to be taken when they suspected that they were infected with the virus and that they were instructed not to attend work until they had received their test results. The fact that the employee went for a Covid-19 test meant that he suspected he had contracted the virus but still went to work before receiving his results.

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Bonny Fourie at IOL Business

Southern Sun temporarily closes Rosebank hotel after hailstorm led to roof collapse; no injuries reported

Moneyweb reports that the Southern Sun Hotel in Rosebank, Johannesburg, has been temporarily closed to assess the extent of the damage caused by a severe hailstorm that gripped parts of the city on Monday night.   The hotel group confirmed on Tuesday that the decision to halt operations at the hotel came after the roof above its restaurant gave in to the weight of ice and water that had built up during the hailstorm. An assessment process has already begun. The severe weather event and subsequent roof collapse called for an evacuation of the premises, where, fortunately, no serious injuries were reported. All guests were relocated to nearby group-owned hotels. The Department of Employment and Labour (DEL) has given the group a week to furnish it with a structural report and 60 days to attend to the damage to the hotel. On Wednesday, the DEL undertook a countrywide inspection of Southern Sun hotels, including the now temporarily closed Rosebank hotel. According to a statement issued by the DEL, the inspection exercise led by inspector general Aggy Moiloa, sought to understand the root “cause of the ceiling collapse, devise mechanisms to prevent future incidents and ensure compliance”. Moiloa added: “We believe that it’ll also be an opportune time to engage with the Southern Sun Hotel’s management on processes that would contribute towards improved compliance with the labour laws.”

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Akhona Matshoba at Moneyweb

Man who allegedly killed a Pietermaritzburg cop in road rage incident appears in court

The Witness reports that a man who is accused of killing a police officer in an alleged road rage incident this week made a brief appearance in the Pietermaritzburg Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday. Asad Haniff Ranjan (29) from White Road in Fox Hill is facing a charge of murder. It is alleged that he shot and killed constable Thabani Gwala (35) on Monday morning in Oribi Road. Gwala, who is originally from KwaSwayimane, was stationed at the Pietermaritzburg Public Order Policing Unit. The state opposed Ranjan being released on bail. Gwala had apparently just dropped his colleagues off after working the night shift when the alleged road rage incident occurred. Police are still investigating. Ranjan was remanded in custody until 21 November for a formal bail application.

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Lethiwe Makhanya at The Citizen

Other internet posting(s) in this news category

  • E-hailing drivers in Cape Town have embarked on three-day stayaway over safety concerns, at Cape Argus
  • Taxi driver loses bid to claim R2.8m for injuries he says were caused by his rescuers, at Pretoria News


'Rein in your members’ eThekwini municipality tells Samwu after Wednesday’s protest action

TimesLIVE reports that according to the eThekwini municipality, SA Municipal Workers' Union (Samwu) members who went on an unauthorised strike on Wednesday face stiff consequences. While a request from Samwu for a two-hour meeting from 8am to 10am was granted, about 500 workers embarked on an “unauthorised” protest through the city. They were apparently seeking “performance bonuses” and for mayor Mxolisi Kaunda to resign. The municipality urged police not to “tolerate acts of lawlessness and criminality in strikes that are not in keeping with the laws of the country”.   It elaborated that the 'no work, no pay and no benefits' principle would apply to employees who had participated in the unauthorised protest and added that “the grievances workers have must be resolved at the bargaining council as negotiations are underway in relation to conditions of service and payment of performance bonuses.” The municipality called on union leaders to “rein in” their members and urged them to engage in a constructive manner to mitigate service delivery impacts.

Read the original of the short report in the above regard at TimesLIVE


Coal miners who contracted work-related diseases take on Exxaro in latest class action

BL Premium reports that coal producer Exxaro is the latest company to face a class action for allegedly failing to implement the necessary safety measures to protect coal miners from contracting illness linked to their work conditions. This will be the third in a series of class actions against coal-mining companies filed by human rights lawyer Richard Spoor “in ongoing efforts to seek justice for workers facing unacceptable conditions within the coal mining industry”.   Similar class actions have been filed against South32, BHP, Seriti Power, Anglo American and Thungela.   Spoor intends to file similar proceedings against Glencore before year-end. The application for certification of a class action against Exxaro, filed by Spoor in the Gauteng High Court last week, “seeks accountability for alleged breaches of legal duties, negligence, and inadequate safety measures that have caused long-term damages to workers’ health and lives”.   The legal action seeks compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, and the pain and suffering endured by affected coal miners. Motley Rice, one of the largest US plaintiff litigation firms, is acting as a consultant in the case. The companies named in the application must now decide if they want to oppose the idea of a class action.

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Denene Erasmus at BusinessLive (subscriber access only)

Other labour / community posting(s) relating to mining

  • Shack dwellers at Vosho settlement in Khayelitsha want sand mining halted, at GroundUp


SA's agriculture sector records highest jobs figure since democracy, Didiza notes

EWN reports that Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development   Minister Thoko Didiza says the sector has demonstrated resilience and the capability to support SA’s economic recovery and growth. On Tuesday, Statistics SA released the latest Quarterly Labour Force Survey data. The report showed that the agricultural sector had created over 60,000 jobs in the third quarter of the 2022/2023 financial year. The increase brought the number of employees in the agriculture sector to 956,000. According to Didiza, this represented the highest employment figure in agriculture since the democratic dispensation. Department spokesperson Reggie Ngcobo said: "The Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development Thoko Didiza is pleased with the agricultural sector's positive contribution to the creation of employment in the country. The last time the agricultural sector recorded a million jobs was in 1993, the era which was underpinned by subsidies."

Read the original of the report in the above regard by Lauren Isaacs at EWN. Read too, More jobs in agriculture in third quarter is good news, says Didiza, at The Citizen

ActionSA to appeal Gauteng government’s denial of access to Nasi Ispani employment records

EWN reports that ActionSA is to file an appeal following the Gauteng government’s decision to deny the public access to the employment records of persons hired through the Nasi Ispani project. The job hiring scheme was launched by Gauteng Premier Panyaza Lesufi on Youth Day and received a staggering 1.2 million applications for only 8,000 jobs available. In early November, thousands of Gauteng youth who scored new jobs with the provincial government received their appointment letters. ActionSA submitted a Promotion of Access to Information Act (PAIA) application to gain access to the documents of all those hired, however, the application was rejected by Lesufi’s office.   ActionSA’s Funzi Ngobeni believes the provincial government is abusing the jobs scheme to drum up support for the African National Congress ahead of the 2024 elections. "We have maintained and reiterated constantly that the hiring scheme project is a PR initiative, launched by Lesufi to campaign and to secure votes for the ANC through the abuse of state resources," Ngobeni claimed.

Read the original of the report in the above regard by Veronica Makhoali at EWN

Over 69,000 people – mostly young and unemployed South Africans – hired for voter registration weekend

News24 reports that the Electoral Commission of SA (IEC) has hired more than 69 000 people, most of whom are young and unemployed, to oversee voter registration weekend, IEC chief executive Sy Mamabolo told reporters. He indicated: "Today, the electoral commission declares its readiness to conduct a general registration weekend as part of the programme for the preparations of the 2024 national and provincial elections. Over two days on 18 and 19 November, we will welcome eligible citizens at 23,296 registration stations across our great land." The registration stations will work between 08h00 and 17h00 on both days. According to Mamabolo, 69,718 staffers were recruited and trained for the registration weekend. Out of these, 53,028 are women and 16,690 are men, with 35,640 registration staff under the age of 35. Another 26,475 are aged between 36 and 50 and remaining 7,603 are 51 years old and older. Importantly, 50,213 of the total staff complement are unemployed persons, according to Mamabolo.

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Soyiso Maliti at News24

Other internet posting(s) in this news category

  • Jobs in SA: These are the professions in demand, and education levels you need, at Business Report
  • ‘Rentekoerse moet daal om ekonomie te help’, by Maroela Media


Drop of 90% in police reservists 'devastating' to high crime levels

News24 reports that despite budgeting R5.7 billion annually to recruit an additional 30,000 officers by 2026, the SA Police Service (SAPS) has cut 90% of its police reservists in the past decade. In a recent parliamentary reply to the DA’s Andrew Whitfield, Police Minister Bheki Cele revealed that the number of reservists declined from a high of 52,054 in the 2011/12 financial year to just 3,502 as at 31 October. Gauteng has the highest number of reservists with 974 officers, while the Northern Cape recorded the fewest at 210. The police ministry, however, said the drop should not be negatively perceived because former reservists who became SAPS officers could now focus on community work full-time, instead of the monthly 16 hours they were required to fulfil while they were reservists. Spokesperson Lirandzu Themba said on Tuesday that the SAPS had embarked on numerous targeted recruitment drives “whereby 16,122 serving reservists who are eligible for employment were recruited to be permanently employed as SAPS or civilian employees." But Whitfield said on Tuesday that the decline in numbers was a "devastating blow to the fight against crime as reservists have played a critical force multiplier role in supporting the SAPS as it has faced declining numbers of personnel". Whitfield criticised the depletion of reservists, blaming Cele for the fall in numbers.

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Khaya Koko at News24. Lees ook, Kommerwekkend min polisiereserviste oor, by Maroela Media

Lesufi apologises to 'the minister' for saying his 'days are numbered' for failing to recognise provincial crime wardens

News24 reports that Gauteng Premier Panyaza Lesufi has apologised to a government minister for claiming his days were numbered in office after the alleged failure to recognise the 6,000 provincial crime wardens the premier launched this year. Over the weekend, ANC Gauteng chairperson Lesufi addressed "an internal political presentation", along with the SA National Civic Organisation (Sanco), in Johannesburg. A video of the meeting showed a fuming Lesufi berating a minister, believed to be Justice and Correctional Services Minister Ronald Lamola, for supposedly not empowering the crime wardens – known colloquially, after the premier, as AmaPanyaza – to carry firearms. In terms of Section 334 of the Criminal Procedure Act, Lamola needs to proclaim any crime wardens or peace officers, who will then be issued with a certificate from the SAPS national commissioner if, "in the opinion of the national commissioner, such person is competent to exercise the relevant powers", including carrying a firearm. Lesufi said: "We've trained these young people to be wardens... you, as a minister, you are refusing to recognise them. Your days are numbered. When young people are assisting us to fight crime, you want to undermine them.” On Monday, the premier backtracked on his heated weekend remarks and wrote: "The content of my presentation came across as insensitive and threatening to a government minister, and for that, I apologise and accept full responsibility for what I said." he added:   "Since our frustration with fighting crime stems from a genuine desire to make a difference, we are actively pursuing a meeting with the relevant ministers to clear the air and make amends."

Read the full original of the report in the above regard compiled by Khaya Koko at News24

Other internet posting(s) in this news category

  • Mashatile says more specialised units on the way to combat crime, at The Mercury


State Security Agency director-general Thembisile Majola quits after 20 months in the job

TimesLIVE and Bloomberg report that State Security Agency (SSA) director-general Thembisile Cheryl Majola has resigned after only 20 months in the top job.   Presidency spokesperson Vincent Magwenya said on Wednesday that President Cyril Ramaphosa had accepted Majola's resignation and that, by mutual consent, it would be effective from 30 November. “The president has expressed his appreciation to Majola for her contribution to the reform and rebuilding of the SSA,” said Magwenya. Ramaphosa appointed Majola in March 2022 to stabilise the country’s intelligence services and to fill critical vacancies in the service. . The appointment was part of a shake-up of the nation’s security forces following criticism of their handling of an outbreak of civil unrest in 2021. Majola is a former deputy minister of energy and was SA’s ambassador to Senegal, Mauritania, Cape Verde, Gambia and Guinea-Bissau. She has held several positions in the Presidency and was a deputy co-ordinator in the National Intelligence Co-ordinating Committee.

Read the original of the reports in the above regard by Amanda Khoza at BusinessLive and Paul Richardson at Moneyweb


  • Government complicit in crime at Eskom, former brigadier tells MPs, at Mail & Guardian
  • Nóg ʼn saak teen voormalige munisipale bestuurder van Frankfort, by Maroela Media
  • SIU freezes pensions, assets of two key players in botched R3bn Limpopo water tender, at
  • News24
  • Rand Water-hoof se kop geëis, by Maroela Media
  • Universities aren’t training future civil servants for what SA needs, at Moneyweb
  • Meeste SA’ners steun nasionalisering van gesondheidsdienste – peiling, by Maroela Media
  • Besliste ‘nee’ vir Bela-wet van Afrikaanse ouers, by Maroela Media


Get other news reports at the SA Labour News home page