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Sierra Leone News: Parliament approves minimum wage

Statutory Instrument No.6 of 2014, which has been created out of the 1997 Minimum Wage Act, has brought with it a Presidential order followed by a Parliamentary approval that the minimum wage for every worker; government and private, should not be below five hundred thousand Leones (Le 500,000).
The Statutory Instrument was tabled in the House of Parliament yesterday by the Minister of Labour and Social Security, Mathew Teambo; and without any objection by the plenary, it is bound to become law after twenty-one (21) days legislative period, provided that period expires without any member of the House objecting to it.
The Minimum Wage Order of 2014 says that by the exercise of the powers conferred upon him by section 3 of the Minimum Wage Act of 1997, the Minister, after consultation with the Joint National Board has declared the minimum wage Order.
According to the Act, the order shall come into operation on the 1st day of January, 2015.
Number-2 of the instrument indicates that in the order, unless the context otherwise requires- “contract of service” means any contract whether in written or oral to employ or to serve as a servant for any period of time or to execute any work and includes a contract of apprenticeship.
It went on to say that any person who has entered into a contract to employ any servant and includes the agent or manager of such person and includes the government and any officer of the government who has entered into a contract of service on behalf of the government.
The instrument described a servant as: a domestic servant, watchman, caretaker, messenger, cleaner or other skilled workman. And that the minimum wage paid to these categories of workers should not be below Le 500,000.
By Poindexter Sama
Friday October 31, 2014

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