This despite the fact that we have said that the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) will fund and put in place systems to address the lay-offs during the lockdown in relation to workers registered for UIF.
It is important that all parties understand that the UIF cannot deal with millions of individual claims – this would lead to chaos. Rather we have put in place systems to pay out UIF benefits through companies, sectoral associations and bargaining councils. Indeed the Textile Bargaining Council has already concluded such an agreement with labour.
We need to stress that such arrangements require that we enter into a Memorandum of Understanding with employer bodies including that their use of the monies will be subject to audit. This has led to some resistance from some employers. They need to understand that these are public funds that by law have to be audited. None of us have a choice in the matter.
I urge all parties to get together and engage so that we can expedite the payment of these monies to the workers that need them. The UIF staff is available to assist in any way necessary. UIF Call Centre (012) 337 1997.