Labour Minister urges companies to pay full salaries

PRETORIA - Labour Minister Thulas Nxesi is appealing to employers to make the lockdown easier on their staff.

He is also urging employers to pay their employees their full salaries for March.

Employers should not deduct money lost under the 21-day lockdown.

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Nxesi says the relief being offered by the UIF is temporary.

"People should not take advantage of the situation," he said.

"Employers should have by now paid the March salaries minus the four days."

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The Labour Department says employers shouldn't shift lockdown losses onto workers.

Some companies are forcing workers to take annual or unpaid leave for the duration of the lockdown.

Nxesi said companies must show a united front with their workers.

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"We do understand that in terms of the leave determination, employees can negotiate with employees to take leave anytime they deem fit.

"However, this is a unique situation that requires all of us to act in a manner that promotes social solidarity," said Nxesi.

The lockdown is expected to end on 16 April.