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UPC Calls For Labour Justice Ahead Of International Labour Day Celebrations

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By Gad Masereka

As Uganda prepares to observe the international Labour Day on 1st- May 2024, the Uganda People’s Congress (UPC) through it’s Spokesperson Sharon Oyat, have called for labour justice in the country.

While addressing the media at the UPC headquarters in Kampala on April 24, 2024, Oyat highlighted the challenges faced by workers in Uganda, particularly in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic. She emphasized the importance of this year’s theme, “Improving Access to Labour Justice,” stressing that adherence to labor laws and justice is crucial for increased productivity.

During her address, She expressed dismay at the prevailing violation of workers’ rights, including long working hours, low wages, and lack of protective gear. Oyat criticized the lack of enforcement of labor standards by the government, which has emboldened some employers to exploit loopholes and mistreat workers.

Furthermore, Oyat raised concerns about the mismanagement of the National Social Security Fund (NSSF), with many employers deducting money from workers’ salaries but failing to remit them to the fund. She called for greater accountability and education for workers regarding their rights and entitlements.

Addressing the issue of casual employment, Oyat noted that the majority of workers in Uganda are treated as casual workers, leading to instability and insecurity. She urged the Ministry of Labour to work closely with trade unions to educate workers about their rights and benefits.

Oyat also highlighted the need for the government to accelerate programs aimed at reducing youth unemployment, including apprenticeship programs and support for small-scale entrepreneurs. She called for the efficient functioning of the industrial court to handle labor disputes and ensure justice for both employers and employees.

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