To establish NEDLAC and promptly begin its work was a key decision for the new government.
Within two years of its establishment, NEDLAC had forged agreements and held discussions concerning, for example, a National Development Agency, job creation in public works programs, guidelines for local development, the Water Services Act, the Insolvency Act, the Mine Health and Safety Act, the Integration of Labour Laws Act, a Regional Industrial Development Program, a National Small Business Development Bill, and a South Africa-European Union Trade Agreement.
The Labor Relations Act and NEDLAC organize the corporatist labor relations framework, which has had a substantial influence on the South African policy process and the development of the new legal and regulatory framework for the telecommunications sector.
The unique brand of corporatism practiced in South Africa has a tremendous impact on the formulation of public policy By using NEDLAC as a mechanism for bringing together the disparate and contesting voices of the private sector, public sector, labor community and development organizations, the state structure diffuses conflict which could take place in a more damaging setting if it were outside of state control.
As for the unions, NEDLAC
traps the labor movement into perpetual discussions with the bosses.
The workshop was attended by Labour Minister, Mildred Oliphant; Labour Deputy Minister Nkosi Phathekile Holomisa; department's Director-General Thobile Lamati; heads of branches and various public entities such as the Unemployment Insurance Fund; the Compensation Fund; Productivity SA; the Commission for Conciliation Mediation and Arbitration, the Sheltered Employment Factories and the NEDLAC
Government has taken concerns raised during the NEDLAC
consultations into account and revised its initial proposals.
The department is working closely with NEDLAC
and the Commission for Conciliation Mediation and Arbitration to ensure that from the ashes of Marikana and other hotspots, a nation united in the view of how it wants to deal with challenges of industrial relations will rise, she said.
It is therefore not only essential that the NHI be phased in over a sensible period but also that the Green Paper should be tabled in NEDLAC
for deliberation and engagement as soon as possible.