New Deal for Farm Workers

A new minimum wage of N$3.70 per hour and food allowance of N$400 per month were approved on Monday for farm workers.

The agreement took place between the Agricultural Employers’ Association (AEA), the Namibian National Farmers Union (NNFU) and the Ministry of Labour and Social Services.

The announcement was made by the chairperson of the AEA Hellmut Foumlrtsch on Tuesday at the opening of the 27th annual congress of the AEA in Windhoek.

The increased minimum wage was yesterday welcomed by farm workers who originally bargained on a minimum wage of N$3.44 per hour and a food allowance of N$345 per month if no farm-produced food is provided.

Foumlrtsch said negotiations for an increased minimum wage started at the beginning of last year, but progress was slow due to various factors.

“No progress was achieved until March this year when the AEA with the support of the NNFU got the ministry of labour to convene once again a Namibia Agricultural Labour Forum meeting where it was decided to negotiate with the trade union Nafwu on the adjustment of the minimum wage. The parties agreed on the new wage structure and the agreement was signed on Monday afternoon at the ministry of labour by the deputy minister, Hon. Maheua. The agreement is binding on the AEA members as of Tuesday this week and is due to be published in the Government Gazette soon. The ministry of labour will thereafter extend the agreement to non-parties in line with Article 71 of the Labour Act of 2007,” Foumlrtsch said.

Source : New Era