The Ministry of Gender Labor and Social Development (MOGLSD) issued a statement on the effects of COVID-19 and employment. The address touched on issues to do with labor relations between employers and employees. 

Here is what you need to know:

The Minister of Gender, Labor and Social Development, Hon. Frank Tumwebaze, convened a tripartite meeting including government, workers (represented by the National Organization of Trade Unions and the Central Organization of Free Trade Unions), and employers (represented by the Federation of Uganda Employers). Participants addressed and agreed upon a number of issues regarding the effects of COVID-19 on employment. The meeting indicated that given the COVID-19 pandemic is a temporary occurrence, the situation calls for patience and mutual understanding between and among workers and employers, not-withstanding legal obligations.  Accordingly, the Tripartite Meeting agreed on measures and guidance as follows: 

  • Where possible, employees should be encouraged to work from home to reduce overcrowding at the workplace but also as a measure aimed at decreasing overhead costs at the workplace; 
  • Employees should be encouraged to take pending annual leave where possible;
  • Employers are encouraged, to the extent possible, not to terminate employees, which will make resuming operations a challenge and poses an additional cost to employers in the form of payment of terminal benefits. v) Sectors not affected adversely by the COVID-19 pandemic like manufacturing, food processing and others should not arbitrarily cut staff wages or lay off staff. 

In the event that termination is inevitable, 

  • Employers and employees are encouraged to negotiate/renegotiate wages before considering lay-offs; 
  • Employers should strictly adhere to the law (Sections 58, 65 and 81 of the Employment Act, 2006, as well as Regulation 44 (a) and (b) of the Employment Regulations, 2011);
  • Employers should try as much as possible to take care of the basic needs (e.g. food) for the workers they lay-off. 
  • Employers must provide information on the number of workers whose employment relationships have been affected or are likely to be affected during the COVID-19 pandemic, which will be used by the government for policy advice and planning.

For its part, MOGLSD is engaged in a number of activities aimed at supporting employers and employees in navigating the challenges posed by the pandemic. These include: 

  • Tasking the COVID-19 National Taskforce with devising a means of targeting and prioritizing the most vulnerable categories of workers who have been laid off or terminated to benefit from food being distributed;
  • Addressing on a case-by-case basis complaints raised by part-time workers and other workers who by the time of the COVID 19 lockdown, had no contracts and were sent home without payment of what was due to them as at the time of the lockdown; and
  • Planning for a Rapid Assessment on the effects of COVID-19 on labour, employment, and productivity, resulting in the development of a Labour Market Risk Management Plan. 

The Tripartite Meeting also agreed to contact Parliament to expedite the process of considering the amendment of the NSSF Act as one of the instruments to address the social security needs of the contributors.

For further information contact: The Ministry of Gender, Labor and Social Development; www.mglsd.go.ug, Email: ps@mglsd.go.ug, Tel: 0414347854/0414347855, the National Organization of Trade Unions, (NOTU); www.notu.or.ug, Tel: 0414256295, the Central Organization of Free Trade Unions, (COFTU), and Federation of Uganda Employers, (FUE) www.fuemployers.org,   Tel +256 392 777 410, Email: info@fuemployers.org 

Minisitule y’ekikula ky’abantu n’abakozi yayisa ekiwandiiko ku bizibu byetufunye mu biseera bya COVID-19 n’emirimu. Ekiwandiiko kyaali kinnyonnyola ebikwaata kunkolagana wakati w’omukozi n’omukozesa.

Bino byolina okumanya:

Minisita w’ekikula ky’abantu emirimu n’enkulakulana y’abantu Hon. Frank Tumwebaze yategeka olukungana wakati wa gavumenti, abakozi (nga bakiikirirwa National Organization of Trade Unions and the Central Organization of Free Trade Union), abakozesa (nga bakiikirirwa ekibiina ekigatta abakozesa). Abateesa ne bakkaanya kubintu ebiwerako ebikwaata ku COVID-19 n’emirimu. Olukiiko lwakkaanya nti olwokuba COVID-19 aliwa kaseera buseera, walina okubaawo obuguminkiriza n’okutegeeragana wakati wabakozi n’abakozesa nga bwebakimanya nti waliwo amateeka agafuga enkolagana yaabwe

Bino byebimu kubyebakkanyaako

  • Wekisoboka, abakozi bakolere awaka okweewala omujjuzo mubifo gyetukolera naye ate era nga kkubo mwetuyinza okuyita okukendeeza kunsasaanya mubifo gyetukolera
  • Abakozi bagambibwe okutwaala leave zaabwe zebandibadde batwaala mu mwaka
  • Abakozesa baasabibwa nti bwekiba kisoboka tebandiwummuzza bakozi kubanga ate emirimu bwejinaddamu ate omukozesa ajja kuyita mukusoomozebwakungi n’okukozesa ensimbi nnyingi mukusasula akasiimo kabakozi beyawumuza.
  • Emirimu egitaakosebwa nnyo mu covid-19 nga amakolero, n’amaloongooseza g’emmere tebandiwummuzza bakozi.

Bwekiba nti okuwummuza abakozi tekyeewarika,

  • Abakozi n’abakozesa balina okuteesa ku nsonga y’omusaala nga tebannabasalako
  • Abakozesa balina okugoberera amateeka, Sections 58, 65 and 81 of the Employment Act, 2006, as well as Regulation 44 (a) and (b) of the Employment Regulations, 2011);
  • Abakozesa balina okulaba nti bakola kunsonga y’ebikozesebwa mubulamu bwabakozi nga emmere nga tebannaba kuyimiriza bakozi
  • Abakozesa balina okufuna ebikwaata ku bakozi baabwe nga ennamba y’abakozi nga emirimu gyaabwe gikoseddwa mu biseera bino ebya COVID-1. Bino bigenda kukozesebwa ebitongole bya gavumenti mukuteekerateekera abantu

MOGLSD nga yyo yeenyigidde mu bintu bingi ebiyamba abakozi n’abakozesa okuyita mumbeera eno. Mubyo mulimu

  • Okusaba COVID-19 National Task Force okulaba nga bayamba abantu abasing okuba mu mbeera eno okubanti beebasooka okufuna ku mmere egabibwa.
  • Okukola ku nsonga ssekinnoomu ezikwaata ku nsonga z’abakozi abatalina ndagano nebabayimiriza ku mirimu nga tebabasasudde nsimbi zaabwe zebaali babanja nga ekizibu tekinagwawo
  • Okuteekateeka ngeri ki gyebagenda okudduukiriramu ku bakozi obakoseddwa nga bafiiriddwa emirimu, nga tebakyaakola bulungi

Olukiiko luno era lwakkiriza okutuukirira palamenti okwanguyiriza ennongoosereza mutteeka lya NSSF sente abakozi zeebeeterekera zisobole okubayamba mubiseera nga bino

Okumanya ebisingawo tuukirira: The Ministry of Gender, Labor and Social Development; www.mglsd.go.ug, Email: ps@mglsd.go.ug, Essimu: 0414347854/0414347855, National Organization of Trade Unions, (NOTU); www.notu.or.ug, Essimu : 0414256295, Central Organization of Free Trade Unions, (COFTU), ne Federation of Uganda Employers, (FUE) www.fuemployers.org,   Essimu +256 392 777 410, Email: info@fuemployers.org