The Federation of Unions of South Africa (Fedusa) on Wednesday said an agreement on a national minimum wage of R20 an hour had been signed by Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa.
The signing of the agreement, which was negotiated through consultations between business and labour leaders at the National Economic Development and Labour Council (Nedlac), was postponed on Tuesday after the country’s biggest trade union, Cosatu, asked to be given time to provide a full report on the agreement to its central executive committee.
Fedusa’s general secretary, Dennis George, told EWN the wage agreement would only be implemented next year.
“The process now will unfold where the legislation will be drafted, and then Parliament has to consult with the public, and so the implementation is only going to be in 2018 anyway.
“So if parties didn’t sign yesterday, the door is still open to come and sign the agreement,” he said.
The deputy president’s office is yet to confirm the trade union federation’s claims.
Cosatu has criticised the hourly rate, saying that it would hardly make a dent in the lives of the poor or help to reduce the country’s unemployment rate, while the National Employers Association said it would put some jobs at risk.
Ramaphosa on Wednesday is expected to provide details on the status of the Nedlac discussions on labour relations and wage inequality at a briefing in Cape Town.