McDonalds commits to paying new minimum wage

McDONALD South Africa on (TODAY) Monday said it was committed to paying fair and just wages to all its employees as stipulated by law following the announcement of a new national minimum wage.

This comes after social media users criticised Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa after he announced that the National Economic Development and Labour Council (Nedlac) Advisory Panel had proposed a national minimum wage rate of R20 an hour, or about R3,500 a month.

Ramaphosa’s company, the Shanduka Group, received a 20-year agreement in 2011 to run 145 McDonald’s restaurants in South Africa. Under the agreement Ramaphosa owned all McDonald’s assets in South Africa, including property.

But Ramaphosa announced that he was divesting from Shanduka to avoid any possibility of conflict of interest after he accepted the deputy president position shortly after the national government elections in 2014.

Despite this, social media users had no kind words for him after the announcement of a national minimum wage did not go down well with many people and organisations.

With over 200 restaurants in all nine provinces across South Africa, McDonald’s employs more than 10 000 people.

Jo-Ann de Wet, chief operations and supply chain officer for McDonald’s SA, said the company took its role in helping strengthen communities seriously and was committed to the well-being and livelihood of all its employees.

“McDonald’s South Africa places the highest importance on its staff. All our labour policies align to the South African Labour Law Act and ensure fair and just remuneration,” de Wet said.

“We furthermore strive to remain employer of choice by often exceeding industry standards and the introduction of various career building initiatives within the business.”

Though de Wet could not provide figures for the least paid workers at McDonald’s, data pulled from a jobs site indicated that average McDonald’s monthly salary ranged from approximately R1,047 per month for crew member to R9,584 per month for manager.

In America, McDonald’s has committed to plans to raise workers’ pay to $10 per hour, up from $9.01, by end of the year after they went on a protest demanding $15 minimum wages.

While the African National Congress welcomed the release of the proposed national minimum wage, the Democratic Alliance said it supported sectoral minimum wages but a one-size fits all approach, no matter how well the intention, would result in further job-losses.

The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) rejected outright the proposal, saying that it favoured business at the expense of workers.

“Any minimum wage that is below R4,500 will not make any difference to the lives of workers or the resolution of inequality in wages and actual living conditions,” the EFF said. – ANA

Category Business, Economy,