27 December Declared As Extra Public Holiday This Year



South African citizens have endured a tough 2022 as they contended with rolling blackouts, increased crime and the increased cost of living. However, they will have one small thing to celebrate this December.




President Cyril Ramaphosa has declared that 27 December 2022 will be a public holiday. The announcement came on Thursday after increased calls from unions and other stakeholders for the president to declare an additional public holiday this year.

Section 2(1) of the Public Holidays Act stipulates that “Whenever a public holiday falls on a Sunday, the following Monday shall be a public holiday.”

This would have meant that the public holiday on 25 December, which falls on a Sunday in 2022, would have been observed on Monday, 26 December 2022.

However, South Africans observe the Day of Goodwill on 26 December 2022. The Day of Goodwill is also a public holiday in South Africa.

Rhamaphosa explained, “If the holiday of Sunday, 25 December were to be moved to Monday, 26 December, this would cancel the holiday of 26 December or cause the two holidays – which are part of 12 paid public holidays annually - to overlap”.

This would have meant that workers would only have 11 paid public holidays this year and Section 5 of the Public Holidays Act provides that "every employee shall be entitled to ... at least the number of public holidays as provided for in this act,” which is 12.

They added that the unique circumstances around the 2022 calendar, and in an effort to uphold relevant labour law principles and practices, the president declared Tuesday, 27 December, as a public holiday in lieu of Christmas Day.





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