Employers urged to pay workers Covid-19 relief funds

7 May 2020 by MPHO SIBANYONI

Cash-strapped employees have filed complaints with the department of labour against employers who failed to pay out money that was claimed from the Unemployment Insurance Fund.

Employment and labour minister Thulas Nxesi revealed this on Wednesday evening after his department received complaints from the desperate workers.The Covid-19 Temporary Employer/Employee Relief Scheme was introduced to enable employers to pay employees who are temporarily out of work due to the pandemic and the country being on lockdown. 

“To date we have paid close to R9-billion in Covid-19 relief. This is the amount that we are paying for relief for workers and we appeal to the employers to ensure that it is paid to the workers without any further delay,” Nxesi said in a media statement.More than R1.6bn paid by UIF for Covid-19 relief – Thulas NxesiMore than 600,000 workers have benefited from the Unemployment Insurance Fund relief scheme since the declaration of the Covid-19 lockdown.NEWS2 weeks ago.

“To ensure that there was no delay in payments to workers, the UIF has provided the employers with the breakdown of how much each worker deserves. This was after there were complaints that the lump sums were confusing employers.

“We took a decision to break-down even the payments, a decision that saw our systems almost overwhelmed with information as we did not want workers’ funds to be delayed even further. We once again appeal to employers with outstanding information regarding claims to ensure that they forward these as soon as possible.

“A total of 576 639 workers have been disadvantaged to the tune of close to R2.4-billion. There are also 17 473 workers who are also disadvantaged because of failed bank verification and an amount of R80 124 837.42 will be paid over as soon as this is resolved,” said Nxesi.

He said the fund had thus far paid R 8.8-billion to 114 661 employers for 1 525 308 workers.Nxesi added that R152 031 601 had been paid through 845 bargaining councils affecting 56 456 workers while R1.3-billion in ordinary benefits had also been disbursed.

Source: Sowetan Live at https://www.sowetanlive.co.za/news/south-africa/2020-05-07-employers-urged-to-pay-workers-covid-19-relief-funds/