OFFICERS from the Ministry of Labour and Industrial Relations will be travelling around the country to ensure that Coronavirus (Covid-19) protocols are observed and that companies and organisations are allowed to run their businesses.
Minister Tomait Kapili said companies were required by shareholders to generate a maximum return for their investment and to protect their shares and interests.
“Businesses across the country have their own rules that the Government cannot interfere with,” Kapili said.
“So if they see problems that the Covid-19 can bring to the company, they can apply their own rules.
“But we have our safety officers and arbitrators on the ground to ensure Covid-19 protocols are adhered too.
“The Government’s position remains that vaccination is voluntary.
“So we can find a balance between the employees and employers so employees can work and observe Covid-19 protocols.
“We will not force employees to go against the rules and regulations of their own company. We will arbitrate and find a balance between how best they can allow employees to work without vaccination should they choose not to take the vaccination.”
The department’s position is that:
- THERE is no such law as the Occupational Safety and Health Act;
- WORKPLACE safety and health laws administered by the department are silent on the Covid-19 pandemic, any epidemic and migratory diseases;
- HEALTH issues with respect to occupational safety and health refers to diseases that arise from work-related incidents, accidents and injuries; and,
- ONLY work-related diseases and injuries are subject to the Workers Compensation Act.