(Oct. 7, 2008) The Namibian Labor Act of 2007 will become effective on November 1, 2008, the Namibian Minister of Labor and Social Welfare announced recently. The implementation of the Act, which was approved several months ago by the Namibian Parliament and the President, had been postponed to accommodate concerns of the business community.
The Act makes the Labor Court part of the High Court and enhances its jurisdiction to hear appeals from arbitral tribunals on questions of law. By eliminating the concept of the “casual worker” (“a day worker who is employed by the same employer on not more than two days in any week”), the Act extends its protection to all employees. It also forces employers to pay all allowances and benefits that make part of the remuneration package to employees on maternity leave. Under the Act, employees who work five-day weeks are entitled to 20 days of leave and five days of compassionate leave, while employees who work six-day weeks will earn 24 days of leave and five days of compassionate leave per annum. (Labor Act Here, NAMIBIA ECONOMIST (Windhoek), Oct. 3, 2008, available at http://allafrica.com/stories/printable/200810030630.html.)