The Department of Labour has gazetted its intentions to move the 1300 sub-class (Iron & Steel Industry) away from the Workmen's Compensation Fund and hand it over to Rand Mutual Assurance.
The intended handover is part of a turnaround strategy for the Compensation Commissioner to improve service delivery to companies. The Department believes this arrangement will facilitate the successful conclusion of the strategy but they have also assured that the Compensation Fund remains responsible for overseeing the compliance of the licensee with all the requirements of the COID Act.
The intended handover to Rand Mutual Assurance (RMA) does not come as a surprise as rumours have been going around for a while. The move will really serve the Iron and Steel industry in many ways. This new initiative by the CC together with the new technology they have introduced over the past few years will enable them to concentrate on other areas of service, for example, Rebates, which have taken a back seat for a number of years. As the Iron & Steel subclass is the biggest subclass in its portfolio, the handover is expected to alleviate the office of the Compensation Commissioner.
Rand Mutual Assurance has grown from strength to strength since its inception. It has a well-established track record in the management of claims for occupational injuries and diseases in the mining industry and has been administering claims since 1894. The ability by RMA to finalise claims for total temporary disablement and permanent disability within 3 to 6 weeks, depending on severity of the injury, is proof of a solid framework it has in place at handling claims.
The handover will not have any adverse effect on MAKROSAFE Holdings' and other agents' clients. RMA already offers the same benefits as stipulated by the Compensation for Occupational Injuries and Disease Act. An official of RMA has confirmed that discounts for MAKROSAFE Holdings' clients will be calculated annually and that claim numbers will be obtained immediately. But the speed with which RMA concludes cases and the close relationship MAKROSAFE Holdings has with RMA for many years should reduce waiting time and improve services for companies and employees involved in incidents.
An additional benefit will be that the handover is also likely to see a reduction in Government red tape which should have a positive impact on the speed with which cases are concluded.
The intentions have only been gazetted and are not yet finalised. Although MAKROSAFE Holdings believes the intended move will benefit the Iron & Steel industry, we will first have to wait until due procedures are followed.
The Department of Labour is encouraging people to give comments, views and opinions regarding this matter. If you have something to say, please do so in writing and submit it to the Compensation Fund, to the following e-mail address: email@example.com before the 31st July2014.