Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa to brief National Assembly on National Minimum Wage

Cape Town - In his last engagement with Members of the National Assembly in the fourth quarter of the 2016 legislative programme, Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa will on Wednesday, 07 December 2016 field questions from Members of Parliament on several issues of national importance including various aspects of the proposed National Minimum Wage.

The engagement with Members of Parliament comes against the background of the recently proposed level of National Minimum Wage unveiled by a Panel of Advisors appointed by Deputy President Ramaphosa to advise NEDLAC Committee of Principals on the level at which the National Minimum Wage could be set.

The Committee of Principals comprising representatives of Labour, Business, Government and Communities was tasked by President Jacob Zuma during the State of the Nation Address of 2014 to look into the issues of wages, wage inequality, labour relations and National Minimum Wage.

Since the announcement of the proposed National Minimum Wage, Deputy President Ramaphosa has been meeting bilaterally with NEDLAC social partners with a view to receiving feedback from their constituencies and to find a common ground among the partners to move the country forward on the issue of the National Minimum Wage.

Among the issues that members of the National Assembly raised regarding the National Minimum Wage is the issue of affordability and whether it could be extended to foreign nationals. Secondly, the Deputy President is expected to brief the National Assembly on measures being undertaken to consolidate existing relations between members of the Executive and Parliament as part of efforts to ensure accountability to the national legislature.

Similarly, Deputy President Ramaphosa will utilise the opportunity of the interaction with Members of Parliament to brief the Assembly on national efforts by Government, business and labour to create a positive climate for investments, to grow the economy and create more jobs for the people. This comes against the background of the recent decisions of S and P, Moody's and Fitch rating agencies to retain the current status of South Africa's credit rating.

Coming against the recently held World AIDS Day Commemoration in Daveyton, Gauteng, Deputy President Ramaphosa will also update Members of Parliament on plans to fight the scourge of HIV and Aids particularly on plans to reduce the rate of new HIV infections especially among young women and girls. South Africa has recently launched a new HIV vaccine trial as part of efforts to push back the HIV epidemic.

The Deputy President is also expected to brief the National Assembly on ship-building training opportunities for South African students arising from his recent working visits to Vietnam and Singapore to consolidate political, economic and trade relations between South Africa and the two countries. Vietnam boasts one of the largest ship-building facilities in the world. In this regard a number of South African students are currently enrolled for Masters Degrees in ship-building in Vietnam.

Source: Government of South Africa