Get Help

Do you know how to get help in the workplace in Zambia, including information on trade unions, labour commissioners, how to get help if you are dismissed, how to get help concerning pay rises

 

 

By Sanday Chongo Kabange

Every Zambian employee either in formal or unorganised (informal) employment is by law entitled to work within internationally agreed working conditions. Anything falling short of that would be termed as an indecent working environment. There are a broad range of issues that constitute indecent working conditions. Such perimeters fall short of the International Labour Organisation (ILO) guidelines concerning Decent Work. 

In the event that you feel that you are working outside the Zambia Decent Work Programme 2007 -2010, get help immediately from the Office of the Labour Commissioner. The Office of the Labour Commissioner handles various labour-related conflicts from individual to industrial matters. At the Office of the Labour Commissioner, commissioners will explain to affected employees what indecent work is, what constitutes dismissal, when it is unfair dismissal, and how to claim with the labour office (where their offices are found and how they operate in different locations of the country).

Get Help 

For example, if an employee or employer terminates employment (verbal or written contract), the affected party has the right to seek the intervention of the Labour Commissioner. The Office of  the Labour Commissioner handles all labour related cases. These include unfair dismissal, underpayment, sexual harassment, discrimination, racism, xenophobia, abrogation of working hours, and the right to join a union of one’s choice. In such a case, the affected party should immediately make a written statement which will be recorded in the registry. 

The Commissioner will then summon the employer and affected employee within the shortest possible time to hear the matter. If the matter is not resolved, the commissioner will set up a Labour Tribunal (sometimes comprising trade union representatives) to hear that matter. The tribunal acts like a jury and adjudicates until a solution favourable to both parties is found. If not amicable solution is reached, the matter can be heard in the Industrial Relations Court. This is the final platform of appeal for labour related matters. 

Contact 

In Lusaka, the Zambian capital, the Labour Commissioner can be found at the following address:

Office of the Labour Commissioner

Ministry of Labour and Social Security

New Government Complex

P.O. Box 32186

Lusaka, Zambia 10101

Tel:  +260 211 223 154 

        +260 211 237 982 

        +260 211 237 981

Cell: +260 977 761 169

Email: labourissues@mlss.gov.zm (this is a hotline email for ALL labour related complaints)

There are also a number of provincial and district offices located in different parts of the country. It is therefore recommended that affected parties outside Lusaka get in touch with their nearest labour office to register their complaints at the earliest possible time.

Read more

Find out more about Searching for Work and Women and Work on Mywage Zambia.

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