February 04, 2018

The data also indicates that the asset value of the Fund has also shot up from 65.7bn/- in 2015/16 to 112.8bn/- in 2016/17. Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s Office (Policy, Parliamentary Affairs, Labour, Employment, Youth and Disabled), Ms Jenista Mhagama, stated this when opening a workshop for legislators here at Parliament premises yesterday.

The Fund, according to the data, has so far registered 12,546 workers during this period, the Members of Parliament were told at a seminar to build capacity over operations and functions of the Fund. The WCF is a social security scheme established under the Workers Compensation Act No 20 of 2008. The fund is responsible for compensating workers who suffer occupational injuries or contract occupational diseases arising out of and in the course of their employment. In case of death of workers, the Fund is responsible for compensating dependents as per set criteria.

The Scheme is operated under social security and insurance principles. Ms Mhagama explained that in ensuring it provides quality services and reasonable compensation, the Fund has been investing in projects to generate income. During the 2016/17 financial year the WCF earned profit amounting to 10.4bn/- from those investments. “I would like to assure you (MPs) that financially the Fund is stable,” she said.

However, the Minister highlighted some of the challenges facing the Fund, among others, failure by the employers to join the Fund and contributing which is against the law. Other setbacks include low awareness among members of the public and stakeholders over the functions of the WCF, inadequate number of doctors to evaluate loss for compensation to workers involved in accidents.Ms Mhagama noted that the Fund was still improving its services in an effort to ensure that workers easily access efficient services.

She argued that the establishment of the Fund was a right decision considering the current environment when the government is gearing up in building industrial economy which would come with several incidents causing injuries to employee

SOURCE: Daily News