SA HR news roundup: Woolworths signs UN women empowerment principles

Sibanye miners demand a pay hike.

W&R Seta collaborates to improve cross-border processes. Woolworths commits to women empowerment. GEPF increases pension. Doctors oppose HPCSA fee. Sibanye miners demand a pay hike.

W&RSeta signs MoU with Namibia Training Authority
The Wholesale and Retail Sector Education and Training Authority (W&RSeta) and the Namibia Training Authority (NTA) have signed a five-year Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) aimed at enabling both parties to enhance their skills planning through collaborative research, and skills development activities.

W&RSeta CEO, Tom Mkhwanazi, says the partnership between the two countries was born out of a cross-border quality assurance issue that arose in 2019.

Woolworths signs up to UN Women Empowerment Principles
Woolworths has become the first major South African retailer to be a signatory to the United Nations (UN) Women Empowerment Principles.

The Women Empowerment Principles (WEP) are a set of seven guidelines that offer direction to companies on how to promote gender equality and the empowerment of women in the workplace and in communities.

GEPF grants its pensioners a 5.5 percent increase
The Government Employee Pension Fund (GEPF) will grant its pensioners a 5.5 percent increase from 1 April 2022.

The fund says it instituted the increase to enable its beneficiaries to keep up with rising inflation rates. “This pension increase is based on the 5.5 percent inflation rate for the 12 months ending 30 November 2021, thus making the increase equal to 100 percent of the consumer price index (CPI) and higher than the 75 percent of consumer price index (CPI) provided in terms of GEP law and rules,” the GEPF indicated in a statement.

Doctors rally against increases in HPCSA registration fee
The Citizen reports that doctors have resorted to signing a petition to try and stop the Health Professions Council of SA (HPCSA) from yet again increasing registration fees.

The new fees for this year apply to all boards, including dieticians, psychologists, emergency care practitioners, occupational therapists and optometrists. The fees, which were gazetted last month, range from R531 for a medical intern to R7,446 for a medical or dental specialist. The increase totals up to nearly 30 percent in the past two years.

Sibanye-Stillwater workers to strike for R1,000 a month increase 
NUM and Amcu, the two biggest mine unions in South Africa, have demanded an increase of R1,000 per month over the next three years, similar to the amount Sibanye’s rival, Harmony Gold, agreed to pay last year.

The Sowetan reports that Sibanye's CEO Neal Froneman said the company would not be revising its final offer, as it could not sustain higher wage increases. “There are no winners in a strike,” he said in a statement.