The Department of Labour which is supposed to play a significant role in reducing unemployment, poverty and inequality through pursuing the objectives of full and productive employment and decent work for all seems to be failing.
The UIF has indeed increased some of its pay-outs but it appears that there is still an enormous backlog for people to get their payments. We often hear of enormous queues, lengthy waiting time and lost papers.
On the issue of the minimum wage, it appears that this has been set back until 1st May 2018. This is still subject to Parliamentary hearings through the Portfolio Committee in Parliament and is still subject to possible changes and refinement.
The CCMA is getting busier and busier and their budget went up 12% by 93.6 million rand per annum.
The Compensation Fund has still not caught up with its backlog over the past twenty years and their budget in fact has been brought down by three million rand.
Our courts have once again proved and underlined the idea of close shop agreements and majority union in the workplace making minority employees subservient.
We have also seen that the restraint of trade agreement is acceptable and can still be used in certain circumstances and enforced.
It should be noted that the Department of Labour has employed many more inspectors and that there will be more and more inspections from time to time. It is still important to display the summary of The Basic Conditions of Employment Act where all the employees can see it.
We seem to have come through another month with Pravin Gordhan still firmly in his seat and the rand being stabilised. We have seen the budget come and go and hopefully there will not be more Parliamentary interference in this vital function.