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Newcastle part of the “mega blitz”, as Gov to inspect tons of businesses
The Department of Employment and Labour‘s Inspection and Enforcement Services (IES) in the KwaZulu-Natal Province will embark on a week-long mega blitz. The team will inspect the Wholesale and Retail Sectors around the province.
The mega blitz inspections will occur between Monday, 7 February and Friday, 11 February 2022 in the eThekwini Metro, Pietermaritzburg, Newcastle, Kokstad, and Ulundi regions. In Phoenix and Isipingo, the inspectorate will also conduct a joint inspection of the road freight and logistics industries.
On Monday, the mega blitz inspectorate teams in Newcastle began with Emily Emilia Boutique in Allen Street, followed by Favourite Factory Shop in Albert Wessels Street and Fashion Clothing in Gutenberg Street. Further noting that multiple businesses will be visited during the course of the week.
The inspectorate will conduct compliance checks under the National Minimum Wage Act (NMWA), the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA), the Basic Conditions of Employment Act (BCEA), the Unemployment Insurance Act (UIA), and the Compensation for Occupational Injuries and Diseases Act.
Inspectors will not only test compliance and address noncompliance; the mega blitz will also advise, educate, and provide technical information and support to both workers and employers about the inspectorate’s services.
The mega blitz inspections will be led by Inspector-General Aggy Moiloa, Chief Inspector Tibor Szana, and KwaZulu-Natal Provincial Chief Inspector Mncedisi Khambula.
The South African Police Service (SAPS) and the Department of Home Affairs will also participate in the blitz inspections to ensure that all institutions, including supermarkets and spaza shops, are thoroughly inspected.
The sector is diverse, with large Distribution Centers and chain stores coexisting with a high prevalence of SMMEs and informal, township, and rural-based outlets, including spaza shops.
Furthermore, supermarkets, general dealers, food and beverages, pharmaceuticals, textiles, clothing, footwear, home furnishings, appliances, equipment, hardware, paint, and glass, and automobile dealers and repair shops are all examples of retailers.
Given the sector’s impact in recent years as a result of the July unrest and Covid-19, Provincial Chief Inspector Mncedisi Khambula believes it is critical to reinforce compliance with labour laws and to ensure that employers continue to adhere to basic working conditions while also ensuring workers’ health and safety at all times.
“Employers can, in the meantime, ensure their house is in order prior to inspectors arriving,” a highly prized piece of advice.
“We are altering our standard by informing employers to prepare the necessary documents prior to our arrival. Employers have no reason to inform us that they did not prepare the necessary paperwork for us if we take this approach. We are not allowing for any justifications.”
What do businesses require for the inspection?
Some of the documents required during the inspection include:
- Attendance Register (Last 2 months).
- Signed employment contracts/letter of appointment of an employee.
- Information about remuneration (payslips/envelopes), overtime, leave pay (Last 2 months).
- Unemployment Insurance, registration number, as well as proof of last payments.
- Compensation of Occupational Injuries and Diseases Act registration number as well as proof of last payments.
- A copy of the CIPRO Certificate.
- A list containing the names and ID numbers of all employees are some of the records inspectors will be expecting employers to produce.
“Many businesses in the Wholesale and Retail sectors are now back up and running as a result of the impact that the July unrest and Covid-19 had on the industry. While we support economic recovery, we do not support worker exploitation. It is critical that we get on the ground and assess whether the working conditions are still being met,” Khambula concluded.
What are your thoughts on the above mentioned, and do you think local businesses will pass inspection?
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