Gloria Kangwa writes
Government to undertake legislative reforms to oblige employers implement decent works in line with the vision 2030 for a prosperous middle-income country, says North-Western Province permanent secretary(PS) Willies Mangimela.
Speaking during the Labour Day celebrations yesterday at the Solwezi Sports Stadium, held under the theme Enhancing productivity and alleviating poverty through the decent work agenda, Mr Mangimela said government had implemented the first and second generation decent work country programs.
He said government was dedicated to creating quality employment that guaranteed social protection and respect for rights at work through the employment code.
“Accordingly, government has implemented decent work country programs that have resulted in opportunities for productive work and delivers a fair income security in work places which have given birth to social protection for families, better prospects for personal development, freedom for people to express their concerns and participate in the decisions that affect their lives,” he said.
Mr Mangimela said the employment code would aid in the strengthening of social protection, reduce casualties and strengthen privileges and obligations of both employers and employees in employment agreements.
He added that the legislative reforms would ensure a change was brought about in the work culture through upward adjustments of the minimum wage for shop workers and others in improving their livelihoods and making workers more productive.
“It is government’s commitment to ensure decent jobs are created through increased investments in social economic infrastructure for sustainable development. Government will implement strategies in the seventh national development plan to address unemployment and underemployment by implementing projects and programs in all parts of the country,” he said.
Speaking during the celebrations, Zambia Congress of Trade Unions president Geoffrey Mbewe said workers picked the theme because it reflected the challenges facing labour in the day to day working lives.
He said workers were the labourers of the wealth created in the country and deserved to benefit from it.
“Workers are calling for editable tax policy. They want decent houses and adequate social protection and demand an industrial policy that will protect their jobs and create more jobs for their unemployed family members,” he said.
Mr Mbewe said the union was concerned with the delayed provision of the famer input support program payment to the farmers adding that the sector and many others had many issues that needed to be addressed.
He urged government to ensure more funds are set aside for education, housing delivery, health and other social needs in order to have an equal tax policy that will shift the tax burden from the poor to the rich.