The rate for the National Minimum Wage (NMW) for each ordinary hour worked is R20.76, however, in terms of agri-workers, the wage payable is R18.68 per hour. This increase was published in the Government Gazette and has been applicable since 1 March 2020.
The NMW applies to all workers, that is, any person who works for another person and who receives or is entitled to receive any payment for that work, including permanent or seasonal workers, labour service providers, or workers contracted on a piece rate.
If any employer is unable to pay the minimum wage as stipulated at any particular time, an application for exemption may be made, however if the employer does not meet the requirements of the Minimum Wage Act, they will be liable to pay a fine.
The National Minimum Wage is also applicable to labour service providers such as Temporary Employment Services and/or independent contractors. It remains the business’ responsibility to ensure any labour service provider contracted also adheres to the minimum wage. Businesses should therefore have an adequate system in place to monitor payments made by labour service providers to the employees.
What are the penalties?
The CCMA and/or Department of Employment and Labour may impose a hefty fine for underpayment of the minimum wage. Non-compliant employers may also be named and shamed in a quarterly publication of all employers that were instructed to comply with the National Minimum Wage which will be posted on the Department of Employment and Labour’s website. SIZA strongly advises all members to remain compliant and under no circumstances attempt to undermine the law.