Friday June 6 2014

We will fix minimum wage next year - govt


The minimum wage that has for long been a centre of advocacy by workers’ organisations will be fixed by June next year, the State Minister for Labour has said.

Mr Mwesigwa Rukutana said the government had prepared a paper which will soon be presented to Cabinet to reactivate the Minimum Wages Advisory Board.

Speaking in Geneva, Switzerland yesterday at the minimum wage-fixing machinery convention, Mr Rukutana announced government’s commitment to undertake a re-adjustment of the minimum wage.

Mr Rukutana’s revelations followed complaints on the operationalisation of the minimum wage fixing-machinery for Uganda at the ongoing Committee of Experts on the application of Conventions and Recommendations in ensuring observance of labour standards.

Workers MP Arinaitwe Rwakajara recently tabled a private member’s Bill [Minimum Wage Bill 2013] seeking to emphasise standardisation of wages for all employees set by a representative board.

After joining the International Labour Organisation in 1963, Uganda in 1967 ratified the Minimum Wage-Fixing Machinery Convention, which was domesticated into national law through the establishment of the Minimum Wages Advisory Board and Wages Councils Act adopted in 1964.

However, the machinery only worked until 1984 when government [then] reviewed the minimum wage until it reached Shs6,000 per month.