The Employment Act regulates terms of employment and minimum conditions of service for employees and it applies to citizens, expatriates, private and parastatal sectors.
Employment of non-citizens
The Employment of Non-Citizens Act regulates the employment of non-citizens in Botswana. All non-citizens employed or engaged in any occupation for reward or profit must be in possession of a work permit, irrespective of the duration of their stay in the country.
A nine-hour five-day week or an eight-hour six-day week is normally observed. A break of at least 30 minutes must be given after five consecutive hours of work. A rest day of not less than 24 consecutive hours, normally including Sunday, must be given in every period of seven consecutive days.
Overtime is calculated on a daily basis, and any time worked in excess of the ordinary daily hours of work is treated as overtime, and must be paid at one-and-a-half times the employee's basic rate and two times the basic rate on weekends and public days. For shift workers, overtime at one-and-a-half times is payable for hours worked in excess of an average of 48 hours over a three-week cycle.
Annual leave is a minimum of 1.25 working days per completed month of service. This equates to a minimum of 15 working days of paid leave per annum.
An employee is entitled to a minimum of 14 working days sick leave per annum after one year of continuous employment. To claim sick leave, the employee must inform the employer as soon as possible and provide a doctor's certificate if absent from work for more than 24 hours.
Provision is made for maternity leave totaling 12 weeks (six weeks before and six weeks after confinement) after the employer has been presented with a certificate signed by a medical doctor, nurse or a midwife. An additional two weeks maternity leave may be granted only if there are medical reasons. During maternity leave, a maternity allowance of not less than 25 per cent of the employee's basic pay or 50 thebe for each day of absence is payable.
Where the employer has brought an employee to the place of employment, the employee has the right to be repatriated, at the employer's expense, to his/her place of recruitment on termination of employment. This right applies to both citizen and expatriate employees, regardless of whether the place of recruitment is within or outside Botswana. Where the employer has brought the employee's family to the place of employment, the family must be repatriated at the expense of the employer in the event of the employee being repatriated or of his/her death.
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