Usamate clarifies public holiday pay

Minister for Employment, Productivity and Industrial Relations Jone Usamate. Picture: FT FILE

EMPLOYERS that are operating today have been reminded to remunerate their workers accordingly within the provisions of the public holiday remuneration under the Employment Relations Act.

Fiji’s Employment Minister Jone Usamate made the clarification with regards to employees who are working during today’s public holiday – Constitution Day.

Mr Usamate raised this while speaking to employers in Nadi and Lautoka.

“This Friday (today) is a public holiday, and during this Constitution Day, employers operating are reminded to pay the workers their public holiday pay.

“However, for workers from the 10 sectors who work during this public holiday, employers are to pay them in accordance with the provisions of the respective Wages Regulations,” Mr Usamate said.

“If a worker does not work in Constitution Day and has worked the normal working day before and normal working day after, then the worker is entitled to public holiday pay.”

Mr Usamate also reiterated that if workers are unable to attend work before and after the public holiday – their absence should be verified by a medical certificate or any other cause acceptable to the employer.

He said the Employment Relations Act stated that a worker must be paid in respect of each public holiday for the number of hours which the worker would normally have worked on that day had it not been a public holiday.

Workers and employers must clearly understand this and seek clarifications from the Ministry if they are unsure of any issues related to their terms and conditions of employment.

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