Two International Labour Organization conventions ratified
Namibia has deposited the Instruments for Ratification of the two International Labour Organization’s (ILO) Conventions concerning Decent Work for Domestic Workers 2011 (No.189) and Elimination of Violence and Harassment in the World of Work, 2019 (No. 190), the country’s labour ministry announced Tuesday.
The depositing was done on behalf of the country by the Permanent Representative of Namibia to Switzerland and the United Nations Office at Geneva, Penda Naanda together with ILO Director General, Guy Ryder late last week, the Ministry of Labour, Industrial Relation and Employment Creation announced in a statement this week.
Naanda said the Convention concerning the Elimination of Violence and Harassment in the World of Work made history being the first international bidding instrument specifically for eliminating violence and harassment in the workplace.
“For many years, our country has been grappling with the problem of sexual and gender violence and harassment. In addition, the legacy of apartheid in the form of racist violence and harassment is unfortunately still alive, particularly in the World of Work. In addition, bullying and various forms of behaviour that inflict physical, emotional and economic harm persist,” said Naanda.
Naanda said the Convention on Decent Work for Domestic Workers, on the other hand, places the importance of achieving decent working and living conditions, respect for human rights, fundamental rights, and access to social protection for domestic workers.
According to Naanda, Namibia houses about 50,000 domestic workers, constituting 7% of Namibian employees, of whom two-thirds are female.
He further indicated that “although Namibian law is now fully aligned with Convention 189, the challenge remains to ensure compliance with the law to improve wages and conditions of employment for domestic workers.”
Meanwhile, acknowledging Namibia’s commitment in ratifying the two Conventions, the ILO Director General Ryder is optimistic that Namibia’s ratification will encourage more countries to take a step in extending basic labour rights to domestic workers around the world.