Work and Wages

This page was last updated on: 2021-03-11

Minimum Wage

Statutory minimum remuneration is fixed by a Wages Regulation Order.  Wages Regulation Order includes any order made by the President and the Minister. Minister appoints a minimum wage advisory board from time to time for any specified area or for group of workers in any occupation, where it is desirable to fix a minimum wage and other conditions of employment. The Minister decides the statutory minimum wage on the basis of wage regulation proposals made by a board or council. The Minister causes the order to be published in the Gazette and from the date of the publication or the other date as the order may prescribe.

The minimum wage was last updated in 1984 and set at 6,000 Ug.Shs. It has not been revised thereafter. In essence, Uganda currently has no minimum wage. A new Minimum Wage Bill was tabled in the parliament for discussion in 2015.

Compliance with minimum wage is ensured by the labour inspectorates. If an employer fails to pay the required remuneration to an employee or fails to observe any of the conditions of employment prescribed in the order, he or she commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a fine of at least 500 shillings for each offence.

Source: § 2 & 13 of the Minimum Wages Advisory Boards and Wages Councils Act 1964

Regular Pay

Wages are remuneration or earnings, however designated or calculated, capable of being expressed in terms of money and fixed by mutual agreement or by national laws or regulations, which are payable under an oral or written contract of service for work done or to be done, or for services rendered or to be rendered but excluding any contributions made or to be made by the employer in respect of his or her employee’s insurance, medical care, welfare, education, training, invalidity, retirement pension, post-service gratuity or severance allowance.

The Employment Act, 2006 regulates the payment of wages to all classes of workers. The Act requires an employer to make timely payment of remuneration to the employees. If a worker is hired for a day, he is to be paid wages at the end of that day. Similarly, if he is hired for a week, he should be paid wages at the end of that week. An employee who is engaged to be paid on fortnightly or monthly basis must be paid wages at the end of each fortnight or month. Similarly, an employee who is engaged to be paid by piece of work done or by results must be paid by intervals of not more than one fortnight.

The wages should be paid in legal tender to the worker at workplace or with prior written consent of the worker, wages may be paid by bank cheque, postal order, money order or by direct payment to the worker's bank account. This means that law does not usually allow in-kind payment of wages. However, Minister may make regulations in this regard after consultation with Labor Advisory Board.

Deduction from wages (either direct or indirect) for the purpose of obtaining or retaining employment is not allowed. Deduction from wages is permitted in case of any tax, rate, subscription or contribution imposed by law and in any other case where worker has agreed to the deduction. Union dues may also be deducted from the wage, provided that the amount of deduction must not exceed two-third of the wages due in respect of that pay period.

An employer should provide itemised pay statement to all workers in writing, in a form and language that is understandable by the worker. These pay slips should contain the worker's gross salary and the details related to the amount and purpose of deductions made. 

Source: § 2, 43-50 of the Employment Act 2006

Regulations on Work and Wages

  • The Employment Act, 2006

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