The Employment Bureau under the Ministry of Employment, Labour Productivity and Skills Development has issued a request to all employers in the country to submit employment data.
According to the bureau’s assistant industrial relations officer, Oarabile Thokoane, the data collection exercise is critical, as it will determine the number of local and foreign employees who are in the country, as well as their qualifications with the aim of localisation.
“We hope to reach an estimated target of 106,793 employers by the end of this exercise on May 30 this year,” she said.
The officer also pointed out that they will be monitoring companies, especially those that have employed foreigners, to ensure that they abide by their training and localisation plans. She said in the past there was poor monitoring on employers, which made it difficult for the bureau to come up with reliable data.
In a notice from the bureau, employers are urged to submit employment data to the nearest district labour office by the end of this month.
It further warned that failure to comply with the requirements or to furnish any information that they know to be false or do not believe to be true, shall be guilty of an offence under the Employment Act and liable to a fine not exceeding P1,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months or both.
“The exercise will be conducted every after six months for us to refresh data,” she said.
She added that they would be working with other government departments such as the Companies and Intellectual Property Authority to determine the number of registered companies and the number of employees they have.
Also, Thokoane noted that 25 data collection officers have been dispatched across the country to assist in this exercise.
As government attaches the highest priority to job creation, the country still suffers from lack of reliable and timely data on employment. This has made it difficult for policymakers and independent observers to assess the extent of employment generation at different points in time.
Last year, Statistics Botswana formal sector employment data reflected a slight improvement of the job scene, increasing by 0.2% (786 persons) from 403,681 persons in September 2015 to 404,387 persons in March 2016. A total of 12,654 (3.1%) employees were non-citizens.
Economist, Keith Jefferies had earlier on indicated that the employment data provided by the statistical agency was old.