Kapuya calls for transferability of benefits, pensions
By Correspondent Rosemary Mirondo
The Confederation of East African Trade Union (EATUC) has been asked to look into the transferability of benefits and pensions.
Minister for Labour, Employment and Youth Development, Prof. Juma Kapuya has called upon EATUC to put in place a mechanism for facilitating migration of workers in a bid to rectify the protocol on free movement of labour services and right of establishment.
Prof Kapuya made the call in Dar es Salaam during a conference on `Harmonisation of Labour Laws in East Africa` which brought together five member countries of Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi.
He said the issue of comprehensive social security was a necessary package in the whole process.
The minister said in most partner states, social security covered a small fraction of the population, citing an example of Tanzania where the social security covered only 5.4 per cent of the population.
The percentage includes contributions from government, parastatal organisations and few non governmental organisations employees, while the majority is left out.
Prof. Kapuya said transferability of pension schemes was a critical area in need of scrutiny because once a remedy was found; it would allay fears prevailing among workers in the five member countries.
``The governments should take a lead to create risk free environment amid insecurity brought about by unfair competition or imbalanced movement of labour,`` he said.
Speaking on behalf of EATUC chairman, TUCTA secretary General, Nestory Ngulla said regional integration could not be realised if labour and employment issues were not addressed and harmonised.
He said the new labour laws in Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda were formulated through ILO`s assistance and were to some extent harmonised.
``There is a need for member countries to understand harmonisation of labour laws as we move towards establishment of the EAC common market,`` he said.