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					              MALAWI THE WARM HEART OF AFRICA
                             COUNTRY REPORT

INTRODUCTION

POLITICAL STRUCTURE

Malawi is a small country situated in the Southern part of Africa and comprises of
three main regions namely:- North, Central and South. It was a British Colony and
got independent in July, 1964 under the leadership of Hastings Kamuzu Banda who
was known for his dictatorship type of government. During his regime a lot of people
were killed on political grounds, detained and some went into exile. In 1994, Malawi
attained it’s first multy-party elections.

ECONOMIC STRUCTURE

Malawi is economically handicaped and is facing stiff competition on the European
Market due to low quality products. Malawi bases it’s policies and strategies on the
central role workers play in the economic development of this country. Without
workers there would be no production of things we applaud as a sign of our socio
economic progress. In March, 2000 the Government decided to have an advisory
board which should be a tripartite (Govt, Employer and Trade Union Representatives)
headed by the Minister of Finance. Malawi mainly depends on agriculture products
and it’s major export is tea, tobacco and sugar and imports a lot of items i.e clothing.

SOCIAL AND LABOUR STRUCTURE

Malawi is trying as much as possible to promote free primary education to eliminate
child labour. It also offers girls free secondary education to encourage girls to go
futher with education and avoid poverty and early marriages though there is no
adquate learning facilities in the schools. All schools are under the Ministry of
Education, sports and culture. There are big challenges of labour movement in
Malawi, to continue to oganise and strengthen our organisation and to end the
oppressive conditions of services especially in the private sector.

EMPLOYMENT

Unemployment in Malawi is very high due to restructuring of organisations. New
technology, outsourcing and redanduncies are taking place.

SOCIAL SECURITY SYSTEM

The above system is not effective due to the conditions that it operates. Malawi has
no old age scheme, but being an industrialised country, Malawi has work injury as a
major scheme, maternity, sickness, and death. These systems cover employed persons
only because it is upon the employer to insure with private insurance companies,
however Malawi also has a NATIONAL INSURANCE COMPANY (NICO) which
is a government owned insurance company. We have a pension scheme which is a



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contributory scheme. The employer contributes 10% after a period of 5 years and the
employee contributes 7.5% of his monthly earnings. The pension age is 55 years for
women and 60 years for men, this is also negotiable for an additional of 5 years,
Those who do not qualify for this scheme are given an exgratia (severence package)
calculated on the number of years they have served with the company. This is all
covered in the Labour Relations Act current law 1996 and Employment Act. We have
a new bill still being debated in Parliament and hoping to come up with favourable
conditions. The minister of Labour and Vocational Training enforces the Law.

WORKERS PARTICIPATION IN SOCIAL SECURITY SYSTEMS

Generally the system is managed by the employer as stated earlier that it is an
employer liability, the government and insurance company without the involvement
of workers. This is due to lack of knowledge on how the system operates and how
one would achieve or benefit from these schemes.

TRADE UNION STRUTURE

Trade unions in Malawi are regulated by the Trade Unio act chapter 54.01 and there
has not been many changes to the act since its inception. Trade Unions operated
under restricted conditions in the one party state and it is until recently, mainly in
1992 after a nation wide industrial strike when the Government realised the dangers of
a disorganised labour force. The first trade union was Transport and allied Workers
Union formed in 1949. Between 1950 and 1959 three more unions were formed and
now Malawi Congress is boasting of 17 affiliated Trade Unions with the structure
roughly as follows: -

FUNCTIONS

   To improve the working conditions of the workers
   To organise and educate members on their rights and role they play as workers
   To bargain collectively




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                                                            ORGANISATION CHART
                                       (This is an example of the layout or the MCTU and note that not all affiliates appear)


                                                                       PRESIDENT
                                                                          AND
                                                                    DEPUTY PRESIDENT

                                                                                                                                             NATIONAL
                                                                                                                                              MOTHER
                                                                SECRETARY GENERAL                                                              BODY
                                                                        AND
                                                             DEPUTY SECRETARY GENERAL



                                                                  TREASURER GENERAL


                                                                    BOARD COMMITTEE
                                                          (presidents and general secretaries from all
                                                             affiliates)TREASURER GENERAL
                 SUB COMMITTEE                                                                                                SUB COMMTTEE
                (OHS,Org.Fin. Educ.)                              WOMEN’S COMMITTEE                                    ( Child Labour, Young Workers)
                                                                                                                                   workers

TUM           HFCWU           CIAWU                 CWU                  SPAWUM                    CSTU                   TGLWU             WBWU        EWU




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posted:8/27/2012
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