Health, safety at workplace critical: Ndemula

Staff Writer

The Deputy Minister of Labour, Industrial Relations and Employment Creation has called on all employers to adopt a culture of safety and health at the workplace to minimise accidents and injuries occurring in the course of work.

Hafeni Ndemula was speaking during the commemoration of World Safety and Health Day in Windhoek.

He informed the gathering that Namibia is busy with the formulation of a Occupational Safety and Health Bill and invited all employers and workers to participate and contribute to the stakeholder consultations which will take place during this year.

Namibia in its National Occupational Safety and Health Policy, he said, adopted a strategy to develop occupational safety and health preventative culture framework.

Ndemula challenged employers to implement an occupational safety and health management system to minimise work related accidents and diseases. ‘’The Occupational Safety and Health Management System allows for systematic identification of hazards and risk, implementation of measures to minimize the risk exposure, effective communication, prevention of accidents; just to mention few,’’ he continued.

This year’s theme of the day reminds the stakeholders about the importance of Social Dialogue at workplace, particularly in the promotion of occupational safety and health.

Ndemula said the country during the Covid-19 dialogue witnessed ‘’how employers and workers collaboration enhanced effective implementation of Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) measures that saved lives of people in Namibia.’’

“This taught us about the importance of social dialogue in strengthening safety and health at all levels and how it can reduce unacceptable occupational deaths and diseases,’’ said Ndemula.

Social dialogue, he continued also contribute towards improving the quality of health and safety policies and strategies, enhancing ownership and commitment, and facilitating effective policy implementation.

A tripartite health and safety taskforce to oversee the implementation of OSH Policy and the development of occupational safety and health bill.

‘’ We safety and health is a collective responsibility. In isolation our goal to safe and secure workplace remain a well meant but futile gesture. It requires strong authentic collaboration
among all involved; the government, employer and the worker to enhance safe and healthy work environment,’’ the deputy minister emphasised.

The event was attended by representatives of TUCNA, NUNW, Namibian Employers’ Federation and the staff of the ministry.


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