A recent inspection blitz at wholesale and retail businesses in Mpumalanga has yielded good results, that saw the Department of Labour forcing some employers to establish corrective measures.
Inspectors from the department visited 219 employers during the operation, and issued more than 43 contravention notices, 228 written undertakings and five prohibition notices.
During the raid, the inspectors examined employers' adherence to the Basic Conditions of Employment Act (BCEA) and the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHS).
They discovered that some employers owed workers a whopping R233 918 in minimum wages, said the department.
The department said the inspectors were able to collect an amount of R68 599.03 in wages, the balance of which would be collected over a period of three months.
"The department has already paid the money collected back to the employees," it said.
The department said the inspection was a result of complaints from workers about the employers' non-compliance to the BCEA and OHS in the wholesale and retail sector.
Labour Minister Membathisi Mdladlana has since criticised non-complying employers "who undermined the labour legislation by denying workers their right to earn a minimum wage".
"I would like to remind non-complying employers that we mean business by protecting the most vulnerable of workers," Minister Mdladlana said.
He also expressed his disappointment at the low level of compliance achieved by employers in the sector in the province and warned that inspectors would be doing follow up inspections in February next year.