Malawi set to establish Workers’ Compensation Fund
Minister of Labour, Agnes NyaLonje, has said preparations for the establishment of the long awaited Workers’ Compensation Fund in the country, are at an advanced stage.
She said this in Lilongwe when she opened a five days training workshop of the first cohort of the Trustees of the Board of the Workers’ Compensation Fund.
According to NyaLonje, Malawi is now the only country in the SADC region that is yet to set up an employment injury fund, a situation she says will benefit workers.
“24 years after the Workers’ Compensation Act was enacted, the Workers’ Compensation Fund is yet to be established, this is why the workshop is very necessary in the preparation for the full establishment of the fund,” said NyaLonje.
She says delays in introducing the fund has increased individual-employer liability system whereby each employer individually bears the burden of paying compensation in the form of lump sum that have proved to be inadequate for sustainable long term support.
Among other, the Workers’ Compensation Fund is designed to address the foregoing challenges of individual-employer liability.
The Fund will require monthly contributions from employers to cover the cost of claims.
This will allow for the pooling of risks thereby moderating the impact of the risks on individual employers.
The Fund would make periodical payments to the injured for life in the case of permanent incapacity.
Employees would be assured of compensation even after the closure or winding up of a business as long as the employer had been contributing to the Fund.
It would also have the prevention component to reduce the risk of accidents and contraction of occupational diseases.
The Fund will be controlled largely by employers and workers as well as other stakeholders, as Trustees of the board.
Meanwhile, the Minister has emphasized the need for the Board to secure the buy-in of all shareholders towards the establishment of the Fund, especially from employers who have to pay into the Fund.