Masisi reassures workers job security
President Dr Mokgweetsi Masisi has reiterated his administration’s commitment to the welfare of workers in the country in the midst of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Although government and Labour unions have endured a not so rosy a relationship over workers’ welfare and salaries, Masisi has said government recognizes that the working conditions of employees are of paramount importance to bring about social justice and socio-economic progress for all, and can determine the political and economic stability of any country.
In his message on the occasion of the commemoration of the International Labour Day today, Masisi said while this year, the day is commemorated under a solemn moment due to the Covid-19 pandemic, that has led to robust measures being put in place to cushion workers and companies post the era.
“We commemorate this day, when millions of workers around the world including in Botswana are at home because of the restrictions that have been imposed on them in efforts to curb the spread and transmission of the COVID-19 virus. It is a time when many are unsure of what the future holds for them regarding their jobs or the future of their companies,” said Masisi.
Masisi also said these measures would ensure that workers do not lose their jobs and companies do
not collapse during the current crisis. He indicated that government is also working on an Economic Stimulus Package (ESP) that will be implemented post Covid-19.
“I wish to underscore that, improving the working conditions of workers is not an end in itself, but rather, it is a process that requires the concerted efforts of all strategic stakeholders,” he added.
Masisi further stated that it is important to create decent working conditions and decent jobs while also ensuring security in the work place and provide social protection for families.
In that regard, government, the International Labour Organization (ILO), the Botswana Federation of Trade Unions (BFTU), Business Botswana (BB) and the Botswana Federation of Public Sectors Union (BOFEPUSU) have signed the second generation Botswana Decent Work Country Programme (BDWCP) 2020- 2024.
The BDWCP is a consensus tool that, among others, aims to promote workers’ rights, productive and decent employment opportunities, as well as enhance social protection and strengthen social dialogue in our country.
Masisi emphasized that the adoption of BDWCP is demonstrates government’s resolve to place decent work as one of the cornerstones of national development strategies.