SA HR news roundup: Home Affairs and Labour focuses on employment of foreign nationals, jobs for over 18s

Foreign national employment under the radar, while Covid-19 vaccination makes slow and steady progress.

The departments of Home Affairs and Labour look to curb employment of illegal foreign nationals, while the sugar industry highlights the high risk of rural job losses following riots in KwaZulu-Natal. Mining partnership set to boost women’s skills through excavator training programme and Vedanta reaches 450 vaccinations milestone.

Spotlight on foreign national employment
With unemployment figures at an all-time high, numerous economic challenges and corruption at immigration level, the Department of Home Affairs (DHA) and the Department of Labour (DoL) are again taking steps to curb the employment of illegal foreign nationals living in South Africa.

The DHA has established an anti-corruption unit comprising immigration experts, lawyers and forensic investigators, in the hopes that employment practices towards foreign nationals will be put under scrutiny, reports Xpatweb.

The onus rests on the employer and the HR department in a company to provide the relevant assurances that their workforce is fully compliant in all regards.

Excavator training for women
Nkwe Platinum and Zijin Mining Group have partnered with Sany Southern Africa to provide an entry-level excavator training programme for six women.

During the week-long programme, which started on 17 August, the women will learn the basic components and structure of excavators at Sany’s Boksburg depot, as well as physically learn how to operate basic movements on the machines.

Vedanta vaccination drive a success, over 18s now eligible for vaccination
Vedanta Zinc International has hosted two mass Covid-19 vaccination drives in Aggeneys, in the Northern Cape, near its zinc operations, which included eligible employees, families and community members.

As a result, the department of health district office vaccinated more than 450 people during both vaccination drives.

“Vedanta will continue to support the government to ensure maximum vaccination capacity at our operations is achieved. The Covid-19 vaccination is our most important tool to help stop the pandemic and we encourage all those who are eligible to get vaccinated for the safety of all South Africans,” says Gamsberg mine GM Pieter van Greunen.

Meanwhile, South Africans aged between 18 and 35 years are now also eligible under the government’s phased vaccination rollout programme.

Riots put rural sugar jobs at risk
The South African Canegrowers Association (SA Canegrowers) is extremely concerned about the impact on the sugar industry of the recent unrest that swept through parts of KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng. It is estimated that the R84 million in losses threatens thousands of rural jobs in the sugar industry.

The association has requested financial relief, with letters sent to the department of Trade, Industry and Competition (DTIC); the National Agricultural Marketing Council (NAMC); the Industrial Development Corporation’s (IDC) Agro Funding Unit and the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development.