FAQs

Employment

Can an employer be legally compelled to notify the local health ministry, either proactively or in response to a request from the ministry or other government agency in case an employee is infected with the COVID-19 virus?

Algeria - Bourabiat Associés

An employer is not legally obligated to notify the local health ministry in the event an employee is infected with the COVID-19. However, an employer can be compelled to do so if they receive a request from the Ministry of Health or another government agency.

Ethiopia - Mesfin Tafesse & Associates

Yes. The Ethiopian government declared a state of emergency on 7 April 2020 which was followed by the enactment of a State of Emergency Proclamation No. 03/2020 (“SOE Proclamation”) by the federal parliament on 10 April 10 2020. Further, the Council of Ministers approved the State of Emergency Regulation No. 03/2020 (“SOE Regulation”) detailing the measures to be taken by the Federal government to contain COVID-19. Under Article 4 (5) of the SOE Regulation, any person that has contracted COVID-19 or any person that knows another person who has contracted COVID-19 must notify the Ministry of Health or the police.

In addition, under the Ethiopian labour law, an employer is legally required to take all necessary occupational safety and health measures and to abide by the standards and directives to be given by appropriate authorities. With respect to COVID-19, the Ethiopian Ministry of Health (“Ministry”) and the Ethiopian Public Health Institute (“EPHI”) have been issuing guidelines to the public, including the obligation to notify the Ministry on any cases or symptoms of COVID-19.

Kenya - Anjarwalla & Khanna

Yes, an employer is legally compelled by the Government of Kenya’s directive to notify the local health ministry, either proactively or in response to a request from the ministry or other government agency in case an employee is infected with the COVID-19 virus.

Malawi - Savjani & Co.

No, we are not aware of any legal provisions which may be relied upon to compel an employer to notify the Ministry of Health, either proactively or in response to a request, in case an employee is infected with the COVID-19 virus. However, the Occupational Safety, Health and Welfare Act, 1997 (the OSHWA), requires an occupier of any workplace who believes or suspects, or has reasonable ground for believing or suspecting, that any case of industrial disease as set out in the Second Schedule has occurred in the workplace to send a written notice of such a case to the Director of Occupational Safety, Health and Welfare (Director). COVID-19 is not included in the list of industrial diseases in the Second Schedule and in our view, an employer would not strictly be required to notify cases of an employee being infected with the COVID-19 virus to the Director under this provision in the case of.

Mauritius - BLC Robert & Associates

An employer is not legally compelled to notify the health ministry in case an employee is infected by the COVID-19 virus, unless specifically requested to do so by the relevant ministry or authority.

Morocco - BFR & Associés

Yes, an employer is legally compelled by the Government of Morocco’s directive to notify the local health ministry, either proactively or in response to a request from the ministry or other government agency in case an employee is infected with the COVID-19 virus.

In the Guidelines of March 19, 2020, aimed at employers and employeespursuant to the fight against the spread of COVID-19, the Ministry of Labor and Occupational Integration indicated that in case an employee is infected with COVID-19, the employer must not allow the employee to report to work and the employer must contact the competent authorities for notification.

Since the employer is responsible for the health and hygiene of the premises, they must quickly clean the premises while providing staff with relevant equipment to ensure their safety.

Nigeria - G.Elias & Co.

Yes, an employer can be legally compelled to report a case of COVID-19.

Pursuant to the directives of the Federal Government of Nigeria issued through the Presidential Task Force for the Coronavirus and the Federal Minister of Health, the general public (including employers) are required to report any suspected case of COVID-19 to the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC). This directive was issued pursuant to the powers of the President under the Quarantine Act 1926.  Similarly, the Public Health Law of Lagos State, 2015 (PHL) obligates the occupier or owner of any building or structure to notify the medical officer of health (orally and in writing) of any occupant suspected of suffering from an infectious disease.

Failure to report a case of an infectious disease under the PHL is an offence punishable with a fine of N1,000,000 (approx. US$2,778) or any non-custodial sentence.

Furthermore, the Infectious Diseases (Emergency Prevention) Regulations, 2020 of Lagos State defines a “Potentially Infectious Person” as “a person who is or may be potentially infected with COVID-19”.  An employer thus has an obligation to report any case of COVID-19.

Rwanda - K. Solutions & Partners

Yes, an employer is legally compelled by the Government of Rwanda’s directive to notify the Health Ministry, either proactively or in response to a request from the ministry or other government agency, if an employee is infected with the COVID-19 virus.

Tanzania - A&K Tanzania

Yes. Although currently there is no directive from the Government of Tanzania that legally compels an employer to notify the local health ministry if an employee is infected with the COVID-19 virus, an employer may be legally compelled to make such a notification if the Government of Tanzania so directs.

Uganda - MMAKS Advocates

Pursuant to Rule 3 (1) of The Public Health (Control of Covid-19) Rules, 2020 which were issued on 25 March 2020, an employer is under a legal obligation to notify the local authority upon becoming aware of any employee who is infected with an infectious disease. The local authority is in turn under an obligation to inform the Medical Officer of Health. This obligation was previously set out in Rule 3 (1) of The Public Health (Notifiable Diseases) Rules SI 281-21.

Zambia - Musa Dudhia & Co.

Yes, an employer is legally required to inform the Worker’s Compensation Commissioner within 3 days of either gaining the knowledge of, or receiving a written notice of the employee getting infected with a disease. The notification is made in a prescribed form pursuant to the Workers’ Compensation Act No. 10 of 1999. An employer who fails to make the report commits an offence and is liable, on conviction, to a fine not exceeding ZMW300 (approximately US$17.6) or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding 3 months or to both.

Once the urgency category levels reach alert level (i.e. the highest level of importance and warranting immediate action or attention), an employer will also legally be required to immediately inform the nearest authorised officer in a local authority or a public health facility upon becoming aware or having reason to suspect that an employee has died or is suffering from the COVID-19 virus. This is pursuant to the Public Health (Infected Areas) (Coronavirus Disease 2019) Regulations, 2020. An employer who fails to make the report commits an offence and is liable, on conviction, to a fine not exceeding ZMW750 (approximately US$44) or imprisonment for a term of 6 months or to both.

UAE - Anjarwalla Collins & Haidermota

Under UAE Federal Law No. 14 of 2014 on communicable diseases (as amended) (“UAE Communicable Diseases Law”), an individual is under a personal duty not to transmit COVID-19 (even if they are asymptomatic) and is required to self-isolate immediately.

Employers are required under the aforementioned law to order employees displaying COVID-19 symptoms to seek immediate medical assistance and also report such employees to the Ministry of Health and Prevention or the nearest health authority.

Is an employer legally obligated to notify employees if any of their employees is infected with the COVID-19 virus?

Ethiopia - Mesfin Tafesse & Associates

The Ethiopian Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs (“MOLSA”) issued a COVID-19 workplace protocol on 18 March 2020 (“MOLSA Protocol”). While an employer is not legally obligated to notify employees, it is required to take measures to ensure the safety of workers, such as providing sick leave immediately to the infected worker and requiring other employees to self-quarantine and get tested as a workplace safety measure. Furthermore, the MOLSA Protocol provides that if an employee is found to have contracted COVID-19, the employer is obligated to give safety instructions to employees without causing panic.

Malawi - Savjani & Co.

An employer is not legally obligated to notify employees if any of their employees is infected with the COVID-19 virus. However, in our view, it may be appropriate for employers to make such a disclosure for the safety of their employees. In such cases, employers should only make general disclosures disclose that someone in the workplace has been exposed to COVID-19, without disclosing the employee’s identity to protect his or her privacy. The employer should advise employees to self-quarantine in such event and seek medical advice if they have any symptoms of the virus.

Mauritius - BLC Robert & Associates

An employer is not legally obligated to notify employees if any of their employees is infected with the COVID-19 virus. However,but the employer should appropriately disclose that someone in the workplace has been exposed to COVID-19, without disclosing the identity of that employee in order to protect their privacy. The employer should advise employees to self-quarantine in such event and seek medical advice or contact the Ministry of Health if they have any symptoms of the virus.

Nigeria - G.Elias & Co.

An employer is not legally obligated to notify other employees in the event an employee is infected with COVID-19. This is because disclosure of an employee’s health status can be deemed as a breach of that employee’s right to privacy as enshrined under the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended).

However, an employer is required to report such cases to the National Centre for Disease Control as the employer is under an obligation under the Common Law to ensure the safety of its employees and to comply with the above directives of the Nigerian Government on social distancing, isolation and quarantining of positive COVID-19 cases.

As a precautionary measure, the employer should direct employees to immediately self-quarantine and seek medical advice if they have exhibit symptoms of COVID-19.

Rwanda - K. Solutions & Partners

An employer is not legally obligated to notify employees if any of their employees is infected with the COVID-19 virus but the employer should appropriately disclose that someone in the workplace has been exposed to COVID-19, without disclosing the identity of that employee in order to protect their privacy. The employer should advise employees to self-quarantine in such event and seek medical advice if they have any symptoms of the virus.

Tanzania - A&K Tanzania

Yes. Although there are no specific COVID-19 related law or directives in Tanzania which obligate an employer to notify employees if any of their fellow employees is infected with the COVID-19 virus, the Occupational Health and Safety Act, 2003 (the OSHA) does impose a duty on employers to ensure the safety, health and welfare at work for all persons working at the work place.

If an employee is infected with COVID-19, then it poses a risk to the safety, health and welfare of other persons working at the work place. Accordingly, under OSHA, the employer should appropriately disclose that someone in the workplace has been exposed to COVID-19, without disclosing the identity of that employee in order to protect their privacy. The disclosure will allow employees to take appropriate next steps from a health and safety perspective (e.g., self-quarantine or seeking medical advice).

Uganda - MMAKS Advocates

An employer is not legally obligated to notify employees if any of their employees is infected with the COVID-19 virus. The Public Health Act (PHA) however empowers the Minister of Health, in respect of an infectious disease, to make rules setting out inter alia duties of employers in relation to the infectious disease.

No rules have been made yet in relation to COVID-19.  The Occupation Health & Safety Act (OHSA) requires employers to provide employees with a safe working environment and also makes it an offence for employees to wilfully or recklessly do anything likely to endanger the safety or health of fellow employees.

In practice, employers are advised to appropriately disclose that someone in the workplace has been exposed to COVID-19, without disclosing the identity of that employee in order to protect their privacy. The employer should also advise employees to self-quarantine in such event and seek medical advice if they have any symptoms of the virus.

Zambia - Musa Dudhia & Co.

Yes, an employer has a duty under section 16 of the Occupational Health and Safety Act No. 36 of 2010 to provide such information as is necessary to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the health and safety of employees at the workplace. In this regard it may be argued that an employer is required to notify employees if any of their employees is infected with COVID-19 as such information is necessary to ensure the health and safety of other employees in the workplace. An employer should appropriately disclose that someone in the workplace has been exposed to COVID-19, without disclosing the identity of that employee in order to protect their privacy. The employer should advise employees, especially those who have been in contact with the infected employee to self-quarantine in such event and seek medical advice if they have any symptoms of the virus.

General

An employer is not legally obligated to notify employees if any of their employees is infected with the COVID-19 virus but the employer should appropriately disclose that someone in the workplace has been exposed to COVID-19, without disclosing the identity of that employee in order to protect their privacy. The employer should advise employees to self-quarantine in such event and seek medical advice if they have any symptoms of the virus.

UAE - Anjarwalla Collins & Haidermota

An employer is not legally obligated to notify employees if any of their employees is infected with the COVID-19 virus but the employer should appropriately disclose that someone in the workplace has been exposed to COVID-19, without disclosing the identity of that employee in order to protect their privacy. The employer should advise employees to self-quarantine in such event and instruct them to seek immediate medical advice if they have any symptoms of the virus and also report such employees to the Ministry of Health and Prevention or the nearest health authority.

Is there an obligation to close a place of work if an employee is infected? At what stage can the employer reopen the place of work?

Algeria - Bourabiat Associés

Yes, Law No. 88-07 dated 26 January 1988 on health, safety and occupational medicine (Law 88-07) imposes a duty on employers to ensure the safety, health and welfare at work for all persons working at the workplace. Law 88-07 imposes a legal obligation on employers to take various measures to protect their employees from the spread of COVID-19 . These measures would likely include closing the place of work so that the premises can be thoroughly cleaned.

Ethiopia - Mesfin Tafesse & Associates

No. Under the State of Emergency Regulation No. 03/2020, there is no obligation for an employer to close a place of work if an employee is infected with COVID19. However, the COVID-19 workplace protocol issued by the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs on 18 March 2020 (the MOLSA Protocol) provides that if an employee shows any symptom or has been diagnosed with COVID-19, the employer must identify workers who have been in contact with the infected worker and clean the workplace with support from the Ethiopian Public Health Institute.

Kenya - Anjarwalla & Khanna

Yes, the Occupational Health and Safety Act, 2007 (the OSHA) imposes a duty on employers to ensure the safety, health and welfare at work for all persons working at the work place. The OSHA imposes a legal obligation on employers to take various measures to protect their employees from the spread of COVID-19 which would likely require closing so that the premises can be thoroughly cleaned in accordance with WHO standards.

Malawi - Savjani & Co.

The OSHWA imposes a duty on employers to ensure the safety, health and welfare at work for all their employees. It also requires employers to provide and maintain working environments for their employees that are safe, without risks to health.

Employers have a legal obligation to take various measures to protect their employees’ health and safety which mayinclude taking steps to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 within the workplace. Such measures may require closing a work place, so that the premises can be thoroughly cleaned in accordance with the World Health Organisation (the WHO) standards.

The Public Health Act, 1948, provides that a local authority may, upon the recommendation of a medical officer or a health inspector, provide notice to an occupier to cleanse and disinfect the premises and destroy any infected articles to prevent the spread of an infectious disease. The cost of the cleansing will be borne by the occupier.

Mauritius - BLC Robert & Associates

The Occupational Health and Safety Act 2005 (OSHA) imposes a duty on employers to ensure the safety, health and welfare at work for all employees. The OSHA states that employers must, as far as practicable, provide and maintain a working environment that is safe and without risks to health. Given the gravity of COVID-19, if an employee does become infected the employer may have no option but to close down until the premises until they can be thoroughly disinfected in accordance with WHO standards.

Morocco - BFR & Associés

Yes. According to Article 749 of the Moroccan Code of Obligations and Contracts, employers  must take "all necessary precautionary measures to guarantee the life and health of his workers, service workers or employees, in the performance of the work which they perform".

Moreover, Article 281 of the Labor Code provides that the employer must ensure that work premises are kept in a state of cleanliness and that the premises are in a condition that is necessary to guarantee the health of employees.

Therefore, in order to fulfill these obligations, the employer must be fully apprised of the preventive measures that need to be undertaken and should also conduct relevant trainings in order to guarantee the health and safety of their employees. The employers must also be willing to incorporate and adapt to any changes that may occur which may affect the life, health and safety of their employees.

Failure to adhere to the above, could result in the employer being forced to close a place of work to protect their employees from the spread of COVID-19.

Nigeria - G.Elias & Co.

Yes, an employer has an obligation to close its place of work if the closure is necessary to safeguard the safety of the employees. This would include a situation where an employee has been infected with COVID-19. The employer will be required to take appropriate measures to ensure that the workplace is safe before reopening it.

Rwanda - K. Solutions & Partners

Yes, the Rwandan Labour Law imposes a duty on employers to ensure the safety, health and welfare at work for all persons working at the work place and for all persons who frequent the enterprise. The Labour law imposes a legal obligation on employers to take various measures to protect their employees from the spread of COVID-19 which would likely require closing so that the premises can be thoroughly cleaned in accordance with WHO standards.

Tanzania - A&K Tanzania

Yes. Although there are no specific COVID-19 related law or directives in Tanzania that obligate an employer to close a place of work if an employee is infected with COVID-19, the Occupational Health and Safety Act, 2003 (the OSHA) does impose a duty on employers to ensure the safety, health and welfare at work for all persons working at the work place. If an employee is infected with COVID-19, then it poses a risk to the safety, health and welfare of other persons working at the work place.

Accordingly, under OSHA, there would be a legal obligation on employers to take various measures to protect their employees from the spread of COVID-19, which would likely require temporarily closing the place of work so that the premises can be thoroughly cleaned in accordance with WHO standards. There are no laws or directives which identify at what stage an employer can reopen the place of work.

Uganda - MMAKS Advocates

Yes, the Occupational Safety and Health Act, 2006 (the OSHA) imposes a duty on employers to ensure the safety, health and welfare for all their employees. The OSHA imposes a legal obligation on employers to take various measures to protect their employees from the spread of COVID-19 which would likely require closing of offices/work stations so that the premises can be thoroughly disinfected.

Zambia - Musa Dudhia & Co.

Although the law does not require the employer to close a place of work if an employee is infected, section 16 of the Occupational Health and Safety Act No. 36 of 2010(the OSHA) imposes a duty on employers to ensure the safety, health and welfare at work for all persons working at the work place and to maintain the workplace so far as is reasonably practicable, in a condition that is safe and without any risk to the health and safety of the employees. The legal obligations on employers to take various measures to protect their employees from the spread of COVID-19 would likely require closing so that the premises can be thoroughly cleaned and sanitized and not place other employees at risk of infection.

UAE - Anjarwalla Collins & Haidermota

Yes, Chapter 5 of Federal Law No. 8 of 1980 (the “UAE Labour Law”) imposes a duty on employers to ensure the safety, health and welfare at work for all persons working at the work place. Accordingly, Chapter 5 of the UAE Labour Law imposes a legal obligation on employers to take various measures to protect their employees from the spread of COVID-19 which would likely require closing of the workplace for a limited period of time so that the premises can be thoroughly cleaned in accordance with World Health Organisation (“WHO”) standards.

Are there any issues with forcing employees to work from home?

Ethiopia - Mesfin Tafesse & Associates

No. Under Article 4 (11) of the State of Emergency Regulation No. 03/2020, employers are required to facilitate working from home for employees.

Malawi - Savjani & Co.

The Employment Act, 2000 does not require an employer to prescribe the place where employees carry out their employment in the employment contract. Where the employee’s place of work has not been set out in the employee’s contract of employment, the employee may be directed to work from home, should the employer have sufficient reason to do so. Even where the employee’s contract of employment sets out the employee’s place of work, we are of the view that, under the current circumstances, it would be reasonable to direct such employees to work from home if the reason is to ensure their health and safety.

Mauritius - BLC Robert & Associates

Employment contracts often provide that the employee’s place of work shall be [x] or such other place as the employee may be notified. In such a case, an employer may require its employees to work from home. Even without such a provision, if the reason is to ensure the health and safety of the employees, an employer would have good grounds for requiring employees to work from home. At present, the prevailing situation in Mauritius, as well as the directives and orders that have been issued by the relevant authorities requires employees to work from home (unless the services provided by the employers are deemed essential). The employer would clearly have good grounds for directing its employees to work from home under the current circumstances.

Nigeria - G.Elias & Co.

No. The issue of “force” does not arise provided that the employee does the same work that the employee is engaged to do from home. In any event, employment contracts in Nigeria normally indicate the place of work of the employee and also provide that the employee will work in such other place as the employer may specify. In such a case, an employer may require its employees to work from anywhere including working from home. Even without such a provision, parties may agree to have the employees work from home under special circumstances, e.g. for reasons of health and safety as with the case of COVID-19.

Rwanda - K. Solutions & Partners

Employment contracts often provide that the employee’s place of work shall be [x] or such other place as the employee may be notified. In such case, an employer may require its employees to work from home. Even without such a provision, if the reason is to ensure the health and safety of the employees, an employer would have good grounds for requiring employees to work from home. The recommendation from Government is clearly good reason in the current circumstances.

Tanzania - A&K Tanzania

Employment contracts often provide that the employee’s place of work shall be [x] or such other place as the employee may be notified. In such case, an employer may require its employees to work from home. Even though the Government has not issued a directive prohibiting employees from working from their official workplace, given the current circumstances surrounding COVID-19, an employer would have good grounds to require employees to work from home if the reason is to ensure the health and safety of the employees.

Uganda - MMAKS Advocates

Employment contracts often set out the places at which employees shall work and these are typically not limited to the official work place and include any other place as the employee may be notified. Accordingly, an employer may require its employees to work from home. Even without such a provision, if the reason is to ensure the health and safety of the employees, an employer would have good grounds for requiring employees to work from home. The recommendation from Government for employees to work from home is clearly good reason in the current circumstances.

Zambia - Musa Dudhia & Co.

Employment contracts often provide that the employee’s place of work shall be [x] or such other place as the employee may be notified. In such case, an employer may require its employees to work from home. Even without such a provision, if the reason is to ensure the health and safety of the employees, an employer would have good grounds for requiring employees to work from home. The duty placed on employees under section 17 of the Occupational Health and Safety Act No. 36 of 2010 to (i) take reasonable care for their own health and safety and that of other persons who may be affected by their acts or omissions; and (ii) cooperate with the employer in relation to any duty placed on the employer to enable the employer perform that duty are clearly good reason in the current circumstances.

General

Employment contracts often provide that the employee’s place of work shall be [x] or such other place as the employee may be notified. In such case, an employer may require its employees to work from home. Even without such a provision, if the reason is to ensure the health and safety of the employees, an employer would have good grounds for requiring employees to work from home. The recommendation from Government is clearly good reason in the current circumstances.

UAE - Anjarwalla Collins & Haidermota

Article 2 of the recently issued Ministerial Resolution No. 279 of 2020 (Regarding the stability of employment in private sector companies during the period of applying precautionary measures to contain the spread of the Novel Corona virus) (the “COVID-19 Employment Resolution”) permits employers to require employees to work from home.

Further Ministerial Resolution No. 281 of 2020 (on remote working in the private sector during the application of precautionary measures to limit the spread of COVID-19) limits the percentage of an employer’s workforce that can physically continue to work from the office premises to 30%. For employees working at the premises, employers are required to implement protective measures including screening devices on the premises to take temperatures and refer suspected cases to health authorities.

Employers are required to provide relevant technical equipment to employees to facilitate home working and determining mechanisms for the management of remote working.

How can employers cut wages for employees? For example, can employees be asked to stay away from work in exchange for reduced pay without triggering redundancies?

Ethiopia - Mesfin Tafesse & Associates

The reduction of wages would require the consent of the employees as wage is agreed between the employer and the employee. Without this agreement, the employer cannot consider wage reduction. The COVID-19 workplace protocol issued by the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs on 18 March 2020 (the MOLSA Protocol) proposes for employers to consider, in view of sustaining their businesses, interim measures such as suspending fringe benefits and allowances that do not form part of the salary of employees, freezing salary increments, and reviewing salary scales. There are no guidelines on reduction of wages and the MOLSA Protocol does not propose for that to be followed by employers.

Malawi - Savjani & Co.

An employer may require an employee to stay away from the workplace as explained above.

Under the Employment Act, 2000, employers cannot unilaterally reduce employees’ wages. Employers may make deductions from employee wages unless such deductions relate to housing, goods provided by  the employer, deductions in relation to a loan or advance on the employee’s salary, or deductions in relation to vacation, pension, medical or insurance schemes. Such deductions cannot exceed 50% of the employee’s wages.

The Employment Act, 2000 in section, 52 (1) (d), provides that an employer is prohibited from doing any act or permitting any act to be done as a direct or indirect result of which an employee is deprived of the benefit or of any portion of the benefit of any remuneration so payable or paid. In our view, the effect of this provision is that an employer is prohibited from unilaterally cutting or reducing an employee’s wages except in the manner set out in section 52 (2).

However, employers may agree with an employee to amend the employee’s terms of  employment as they relate to wages, including howwageshow wages are paid and the amount of wages payable. When renegotiating employees’ wages, employers must adequately consult with the affected employees and must not be seen to have coerced the employees into agreeing to the new terms. Any agreement amending the employee’s wages must be in writing and should explain the circumstances that necessitate the reduction of the employee’s wages.

Mauritius - BLC Robert & Associates

An employer may require an employee to stay away from the workplace as explained above. The reduction of wages unilaterally without triggering a redundancy would require the consent of the employee. However the employer may require a worker to work temporarily for a time shorter than that specified in the employment agreement or at a reduced remuneration subject to the approval of the supervising officer of the Ministry responsible for labour and employment relations.

Morocco - BFR & Associés

An employer may require an employee to stay away from the workplace as explained above. However the reduction of wages without triggering a redundancy would require the consent of the employee.

According to Article 185 of the Labor Code, a reduction of wages may not be less than 50 per cent of the normal wage and may not exceed 60 days in the event of a crisis.

Pursuant to the decision of the Moroccan High Court dated December 12, 2017, a reduction of rages without the express consent of the employee is equivalent to an unfair redundancy.

Nigeria - G.Elias & Co.

Section 17(1)(a) of the Labour Act 1971 (which only governs workers providing manual and unskilled labour) stipulates that where an employer is unable to provide work for an employee owing to a temporary emergency or other circumstances beyond the employer’s control, the employee would only be entitled to a day’s wages.

For other categories of employees, whether employees can be asked by employers to take a reduction in wages depends on the terms of their employment contracts or agreements subsequently reached between the employer and the employees in light of the prevailing circumstances.  Where no agreement is reached, the options open to both the employer and the employees are either termination of the employment contracts or the declaration of a redundancy.

Rwanda - K. Solutions & Partners

An employer may require an employee to stay away from the workplace as explained above. However, the reduction of wages without triggering a redundancy would require the consent of the employee.

Tanzania - A&K Tanzania

Yes, with consultation and consent. An employer may require an employee to stay away from the workplace as explained above. However, the reduction of wages without triggering a redundancy would require the consent of the employee. Section 15(4) of the Employment Act requires employers to consult with their employees where any term and condition of employment changes and to notify the employees of the change in writing. Although the provisions of the Employment Act are silent on whether the consent of the employees is required before the change can be effected, best practices suggest that consent of the employee should be obtained. Furthermore, if the employer effects the changes unilaterally, it may give rise to a claim for breach of contract. Accordingly, following consultation, the employers should document the consent of the employees with regard to reduced wages.

Uganda - MMAKS Advocates

The Employment Act expressly prohibits reduction of wages save with the consent of the employee.

Zambia - Musa Dudhia & Co.

An employer may require an employee to stay away from the workplace as explained above. However, the reduction of wages without triggering a redundancy would require the consent of the employee.An employer may require an employee to stay away from the workplace as explained above. However, the reduction of wages without triggering a redundancy would require the consent of the employee.

General

An employer may require an employee to stay away from the workplace as explained above. However the reduction of wages without triggering a redundancy would require the consent of the employee.

UAE - Anjarwalla Collins & Haidermota

The COVID-19 Employment Resolution encourages employers to consider alternative means of reducing staff costs rather than terminations/redundancies and makes clear that certain issues should be with an employee’s express written agreement. The COVID-19 Employment Resolution envisages that measures should be implemented gradually in turn, starting from remote working and ending with permanent reduction in salary.

An employer has the option to either implement a temporary reduction in salary of an employee or even a permanent reduction in salary. However, an employer is required to obtain prior written consent of the employee if the employer wishes to reduce the salary of an employee, whether such reduction is temporary or permanent. A temporary addendum to the labour contract (“Temporary Addendum”) should be entered into in the case of temporary reduction. Based on the COVID-19 Employment Resolution, an employer is not required to file a temporary addendum of the labour contract with the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (”MOHRE”) unless MOHRE requires the employer to do so. Having said that, we understand that from a practical perspective, MOHRE has asked employers to upload the temporary salary reduction changes on the MOHRE online portal, so that MOHRE can independently have consent confirmations from the effected employees. A labour contract modification form (“Labour Contract Modification Form”) should be entered into in the case of a permanent reduction of salary and the employer is required to file it with the MOHRE.

In the event of termination of an employee’s employment after a valid reduction of their salary (whether permanent or temporary), it is highly likely that their end of service gratuity would be computed based on such reduced salary unless agreed otherwise in writing when entering into the Temporary Addendum or the Labour Contract Modification Form (as the case may be).

MOHRE has also called on employers not to terminate the service of any employee with a confirmed COVID-19 case. MOHRE has confirmed that it would deal with any received complaint about service termination over a COVID-19 case in accordance with the UAE Labour Law. If any such complaint cannot be solved amicably by the employer and the employee, then it would be referred to the courts of law, which would determine whether or not the service termination falls under arbitrary dismissal.

Can an employer force employees to take outstanding leave days?

Algeria - Bourabiat Associés

Under Article 51 of the law n° 90-11 dated 21 April 1990, the consent of the affected employees should be sought before an employee is required to take their outstanding leave days.

Ethiopia - Mesfin Tafesse & Associates

Yes. Pursuant to the COVID-19 workplace protocol issued by the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs on 18 March 2020 (the MOLSA Protocol), an employer is encouraged to grant outstanding leave days to employees. If employees do not have outstanding leave days, the MOLSA Protocol proposes for employers to arrange leave days from the upcoming budget year to be used. This is to minimise any potential wage reduction, suspension or termination of contracts.

Kenya - Anjarwalla & Khanna

Under Kenyan law, the consent of the affected employees should be sought before an employer can force its employees to take their outstanding leave days. Section 10(5) of the Employment Act requires employers to consult with their employees where any term and condition of employment changes and to notify the employees of the change in writing.

The provisions of the Employment Act refer to consultation but they are silent on whether the consent of the employees is required before the decision can be undertaken. Case law does however provide that the employees’ consent is required before the changes are effected.  Employers should document the consent of the employees and the reasons for the mandatory leave.

Malawi - Savjani & Co.

Section 45 of the Employment Act, 2000provides that annual leave shall be granted by the employer, in consultation with the employee, as from a date determined by the employer.  The Employment Act, 2000 refers to consultation but is silent on whether the consent of the employees is required before the employer grants leave and determines the date on which leave commences. Employers must ensure that they engage in “adequate” consultation  where they are required to consult with employees.

Case law on the adequacy of consultation requires  employers to give the concerned employee an opportunity to make representations and where possible requires the employer to find ways of ameliorating the negative outcome of such decisions on employees.

In our view, Section 45 empowers the employer to make the final decision of when employees may go on leave, following consultation with the employee. It does not require that the employee agree with the time the employer has granted leave or that the employee provide consent.

However, the employee’s conditions of service may provide for employee consent before leave is granted and must therefore also be considered where applicable.

Morocco - BFR & Associés

Under Moroccan law, the consent of the affected employees should be sought before an employer can force its employees to take their outstanding leave days.

Under Article 245 of the Labor Code, the paid annual leave dates are set by the employer after consultation with the employee’s representatives and where applicable, union representatives in the company. The dates of departure of employees on paid annual leave are fixed after consultation with the employees concerned, taking into account the family situation of the employees and their seniority in the company.

Nigeria - G.Elias & Co.

This is largely dependent on the terms of the employment contract. In the absence of such a provision, the employer cannot compel the employee to take the outstanding leave. They can only negotiate with the employee to take the leave days.

Rwanda - K. Solutions & Partners

Under Rwandan law, the annual leave schedule is drawn up by the employer with due regard to the wish of the employee and the need for maintaining the normal functioning of the enterprise. The consent of the affected employees should be sought before an employer can ask its employees to take their outstanding leave days. Article 47 of the Labour Law requires employers to consult and agree with their employees where any term and condition of employment changes and to notify the employees of the change in writing.

Tanzania - A&K Tanzania

Yes. Section 31(3) of the Employment Act provides that an employer may determine when annual leave is to be taken provided that (i) it is not taken later than six months after the end of the leave cycle, (ii) or twelve months after the end of the leave cycle if the employee has consented and the extension is justified by the operational requirements of the employer. The requirement for employee consent only applies to leave that is taken later than twelve months after the end of the leave cycle.

Uganda - MMAKS Advocates

Leave is taken at such times as may be agreed upon between the employer and the employee. The consent of the affected employees should therefore be sought before an employer can force its employees to take their outstanding leave days. The Industrial Court has however held that in exceptional circumstances, employers can without the employees’ consent, send employees on forced leave. The COVID-19 pandemic would typically fall under such exceptional circumstances.

Zambia - Musa Dudhia & Co.

Under the Employment Code Act No. 3 of 2019, an employer in consultation with the employee is required to prepare an annual leave plan specifying when the annual leave is to be taken by the employee. It is usual for such leave plan or the contract of employment to provide that annual leave will be taken by the employee at such times as are convenient to the needs of the business.

In such a case an employer may rely on such clause to require its employees to take outstanding leave days. It is recommended however that an employee’s consent is sought before the employer forces the employee to take their outstanding leave days to avoid any claims for redundancy based on the unilateral variation of an employee’s conditions of employment to the employee’s detriment

UAE - Anjarwalla Collins & Haidermota

Under the UAE Labour Law, the employer retains the right to determine the date of commencement of annual leave of an employee and as such forced annual leave would not have required employee consent. However, the introduction of the Temporary Addendum under the COVID-19 Employee Resolution appears to suggest that employee consent is also required before forcing employees to take their outstanding leave. As such, it is advised that at the time of placing employees on forced annual leave, the leave arrangement is documented (which can also be in the form of signing a Temporary Addendum for such forced annual leave).

Can employers force employees to go on forced paid leave or unpaid leave during this time?

Algeria - Bourabiat Associés

According to Decree No°20-69 dated 21 March 2020 and Decree No°20-70 dated 24 March 2020 on preventive measures to combat the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19), 50% (and more if possible) of employees in public institutions, administrations and public and private companies may be placed under exceptional paid leave (the Exceptional Leave). This Exceptional Leave  is paid by the employer.

According to Article 5 of Decree No°20-69 dated 21 March 2020, employees working in bars, restaurants, leisure facilities which have been shut down in light of the pandemic will not be paid during the period when such businesses have been shut down. These employees cannot be forced to go on paid leave.

Ethiopia - Mesfin Tafesse & Associates

An employer may grant paid leave to an employee without deducting such leave from the employee’s annual leave as a measure to prevent the spread of COVID-19. However, an unpaid leave maybe permissible if:

  1. the employer and employee expressly agree; or
  2. the employer suspends its operations resulting in the suspension of the employee.

The Ethiopian labour law permits suspension of employees in cases of force majeure and the occurrence of financial problems not attributable to the employer.  Suspension of employees requires the prior approval of the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs.

Kenya - Anjarwalla & Khanna

Under Kenyan law, the consent of the affected employees should be sought before an employer can force its employees to go on forced paid leave or unpaid leave. Section 10(5) of the Employment Act requires employers to consult with their employees where any term and condition of employment changes and to notify the employees of the change in writing.

The provisions of the Employment Act refer to consultation but they are silent on whether the consent of the employees is required before the decision can be undertaken. Case law does however provide that the employees’ consent is required before the changes are effected. Employers should document the consent of the employees and the reasons for the forced leave.

Malawi - Savjani & Co.

The Employment Act, 2000 only provides for Annual leave, Sick leave and Maternity leave. The Employment Act does not contain provisions for forced leave, whether paid or unpaid. Forced paid leave in our view is not expressly prohibited by the Employment Act, 2000. However, as provided in Section 45, we are of the view, that employers must consult the affected employees before a decision to send the employees on paid leave is made.

Employers may not send employees on unpaid forced leave or forced leave on a reduced salary. The Employment Act, 2000 prohibits employers from doing any act or permitting any act to be done as a direct or indirect result of which an employee is deprived of the benefit of or any portion of the benefit of any remuneration so payable or paid. This provision prevents employers from unilaterally reducing or cutting off employee’s wages and as such would prevent employers from sending employees on unpaid forced leave or forced leave on a reduced salary unless the employees have been consulted and have agreed to such reductions of salary or unpaid forced leave

Mauritius - BLC Robert & Associates

For employees whose monthly basic salary is MUR 50 000 or less, the law provides that where an employer and an employee  are unable to agree as to when the leave  is to be taken, half of the leave period shall be fixed by the employer and the other half by the employee. Hence the employer can force the employee to take half of their leave entitlement. For those employees whose basic salary is more than MUR 50 000 a month, leave will be subject to the terms of the employment agreement or as agreed between the employer and employee.

An employer may require a worker to work at a reduced remuneration subject to the approval of the supervising officer of the Ministry responsible for labour and employment relations or with the agreement of the employee.

Morocco - BFR & Associés

Under Moroccan law, the consent of the affected employees should be sought before an employer can force its employees to go on forced paid leave or unpaid leave.

Under Article 245 of the Labor Code, the paid annual leave dates are set by the employer after consultation with the employee representatives and, where applicable, union representatives in the company. The dates of departure of employees on paid annual leave are fixed after consultation with those concerned, taking into account the family situation of the employees and their seniority in the company.

In addition, Article 246 of the Labor Code also provides that changes in annual leave must be communicated to any employee at least 30 days before the date of departure.

Nigeria - G.Elias & Co.

No, an employer cannot force employees to go on forced leave. However, this may be possible where the contract of employment allows for the same. In the absence of any contractual terms, the employer and the employee would have to agree on the conditions for any leave during this time.

Rwanda - K. Solutions & Partners

Under Rwandan law, the consent of the affected employees should be sought before an employer can force its employees to go on forced paid leave. Article 47 of the Labour Law requires employers to consult and agree with their employees where any term and condition of employment changes and to notify the employees of the change in writing.

For Unpaid Leave, the Labour Law specifies that the employment contract can be suspend due to force majeure. Even if the term “Force Majeure” is not defined under Rwandan Labour Law, the recommendation from Government to fight against COVID-19 is clearly good ground for Force Majeure. The Labour Law refers to the consultation and agreement between employer and employee on the obligations to remain during the suspension period.

Tanzania - A&K Tanzania

Yes, with consultation and consent.

The Employment Act does not provide for unpaid leave. However, employment contracts often set out the terms and conditions relating to unpaid leave. In such case, the terms of the contract would need to be reviewed and they may provide a basis to take unpaid leave.

Even without such a provision, an employer may rely on section 15(4) of the Employment Act which requires employers to consult with their employees where any term and condition of employment changes and to notify the employees of the change in writing. Although the provisions of the Employment Act are silent on whether the consent of the employees is required before the change can be effected, best practices suggest that consent of the employee should be obtained.  Accordingly, following consultation, the employers should document the consent of the employees with regard to taking unpaid leave.

Uganda - MMAKS Advocates

The consent of the affected employees should be sought before an employer can force its employees to go on forced paid leave or unpaid leave. The Industrial Court has held that in exceptional circumstances, employers can, without the employees’ consent, send employees on forced leave. The COVID-19 pandemic would typically fall under such exceptional circumstances, the fundamental basis being everyone’s safety.

Zambia - Musa Dudhia & Co.

Under section 48 of the Employment Code Act No. 3 of 2019, an employer may send an employee on forced leave, provided that the employer pays the employee’s basic pay during the period of forced leave. It is intended that the Minister of Labour and Social Security (the “Minister of Labour”) will by statutory instrument prescribe the circumstances under which an employee is required to be sent on forced leave.

However, such statutory instrument has not yet been passed. It may be argued that an employer may send employees on forced leave during any shut downs or quarantine measures occasioned by COVID-19. However, employers should note that until the statutory instrument is passed, the circumstances under which employees may be sent on forced leave are not certain.

UAE - Anjarwalla Collins & Haidermota

Please refer to our response to Question 6 above in relation to forced annual leave. In order to place an employee on unpaid leave, the prior written consent of the affected employees should be obtained by an employer. A Temporary Addendum is required to be entered into between the employer and the employee to effect the taking of forced unpaid leave by the employee.

Is notice required to suspend or put an employee on unpaid leave?

Ethiopia - Mesfin Tafesse & Associates

Notice is not required. However, the employer should inform the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs in writing within three working days of the occurrence of the ground for suspension. If the Ministry fails to respond within those three days, the employer is deemed to have been permitted to suspend.

Is there a maximum number of days allowed for suspension of employment?

Ethiopia - Mesfin Tafesse & Associates

The suspension period cannot exceed 90 days.

Do annual leave days continue to accrue during suspension of employment?

Ethiopia - Mesfin Tafesse & Associates

Yes. Annual leave accrues based on the duration of the employee’s service. As suspension does not presume termination of employment, annual leave will continue to accrue unless the parties agree otherwise.

Can employment be terminated at the end of the suspension period should the business continue to be on the downturn and is unable to sustain the headcount due to COVID-19

Ethiopia - Mesfin Tafesse & Associates

No. Under the State of Emergency Regulation No. 03/2020 (“SOE Regulation”), an employer is prohibited from terminating contracts of employment for the duration of the State of Emergency subject to the conditions to be laid out by the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs.  To date, the Ministry has only issued a COVID-19 workplace protocol (the MOLSA Protocol) and not specific directives on termination of contracts.

The State of Emergency’s restriction on termination should be understood in the context of COVID-19 and does not apply to a regular employment relationship. As such, if the grounds under the labour law resulting in contract termination occur outside of COVID-19, the employer will be entitled to terminate. This interpretation is yet to be tested at the courts which may apply a more protective interpretation

Can the quarantine period be deducted from an employee’s annual leave or sick leave? What if the period exceeds the employee’s sick leave entitlement?

Algeria - Bourabiat Associés

The quarantine period should be deducted from an employee’s sick leave.

Ethiopia - Mesfin Tafesse & Associates

The quarantine period could be deducted from an employee’s sick leave. Where the period exceeds the employee’s sick leave entitlement, such period may be deducted from the employee’s annual leave with the employee’s consent. In the event the quarantine period exceeds both sick and annual leave entitlements, the employer is entitled to suspend or terminate employment by providing the appropriate notice.

Malawi - Savjani & Co.

The quarantine period can be deducted from an employee’s sick leave. Where the period exceeds the employee’s sick leave entitlement, such period can be deducted from the employee’s annual leave.

Mauritius - BLC Robert & Associates

It would be on case-to-case basis as to whether the quarantine would be considered as sick leave. If the employee by way of precautionary measure has decided to self-quarantine, then it may not be considered as sick leave but may count towards annual leave. In the event the employee has exhausted his annual leave and sick leave entitlements, then such leave would be taken as unpaid leave.

Morocco - BFR & Associés

The quarantine period cannot be deducted from the employee’s annual leave (unless the employee provides its consent to it) or sick leave.

However, in the event the employee cannot work remotely because they are sick, the employer can deduct the non-working days from the employees sick leave.

According to Article 273 of the Labour Code, where an employee is absent due to sickness or accident, other than an occupational disease or accident at work, the employee will not be compensated.

Nigeria - G.Elias & Co.

This would depend on whether the employee is available to work during the quarantine period.  Unless the employment contract provides otherwise, where the employee is required to work (or is available to work but no work is provided) during the quarantine period, the period should not be deducted from the employee’s annual leave or sick leave period.  However, where the employee is unable to work during the quarantine period due to ill-health, the quarantine period can be deducted from the employee’s sick leave.

The terms of the employment contract would normally determine what would need to happen in the event the period of the leave exceeds the employee’s sick leave entitlement. In the absence of such a provision in the employment contract, the usual practice would be to deduct the extended sick leave period from the employee’s annual leave.

Rwanda - K. Solutions & Partners

The quarantine period recommended/approved by a medical doctor should be considered as sick leave for a maximum period of 3 months (paid sick leave) which can be extended by an additional 3 months (unpaid sick leave). Beyond the period of 6 months, the employee has the right to terminate the employment contract on the ground of sickness.

Zambia - Musa Dudhia & Co.

The quarantine period may be deducted from an employee’s annual leave if the employee has been quarantined without sickness. Once the annual leave days are depleted, the employer may send the employee on forced leave provided the employer pays the employee the basic pay during such period of forced leave or can agree with the employee to take unpaid leave.

If the employee has been quarantined with sickness the period may be deducted from the employee’s sick leave (sick leave in Zambia is 6 months – first 3 months on full pay and last 3 months on half pay). Once the entitlement to sick leave ends and the employee has not recovered from the sickness, the employer may, on the recommendation of a medical doctor, discharge the employee on medical grounds. The employer will be required to pay the employee medical discharge benefits of not less than 3 months basic pay for every year served.

General

The quarantine period should be deducted from an employee’s sick leave. Where the period exceeds the employee’s sick leave entitlement, such period should be deducted from the employee’s annual leave.

UAE - Anjarwalla Collins & Haidermota

In the case of annual leave, and as stated above, an employer is under the UAE Labour Law entitled to force employees to take their annual leave. However, the COVID-19 Employment Resolution appears to suggest that the employee’s consent is required. Arguably, based on the provisions of the UAE Labour Law which permit an employer to determine the period when its employees take annual leave, an employer can deduct the quarantine period from an employee’s annual leave.

In the case of sick leave, if an employee is found to have contracted COVID-19 prior to the expiry of the quarantine period, then arguably an employer would be entitled to deduct the quarantine period from the employee’s sick leave. However, if an employee is found to not have contracted COVID-19 after expiry of the quarantine period, then the employer’s argument to deduct the quarantine period from the employee’s sick leave would be weak.

Can terms of employment be renegotiated during this period of the pandemic?

Algeria - Bourabiat Associés

Subject to the Exceptional Leave, any term of employment such as working hours, remuneration and leave days entitlement can be renegotiated during this period with the employee. Under article 63 of Law n°90-11, the employer is required to consult with the employees prior to making any amendments to their terms of employment and t obtain their consent to the amendments to the terms of their employment.

Ethiopia - Mesfin Tafesse & Associates

Yes. Terms of employment in an employment contract may be renegotiated and amended at any time with the agreement of both parties. However, the minimum entitlements provided to an employee under the labour proclamation cannot be derogated.

Kenya - Anjarwalla & Khanna

Any term of employment such as working hours, remuneration and leave days entitlement can be renegotiated during this period provided the employer consults with the employees prior to making any amendments to their terms of employment, as required under Section 10 (5) of the Employment Act and obtains their consent to the changes.

Malawi - Savjani & Co.

Any term of employment such as working hours (subject to the prescribed statutory maximum working hours), remuneration (subject to the prescribed statutory minimum wage) and leave days entitlement (subject to the prescribed statutory minimum leave day entitlement) can be renegotiated during this period provided the employer consults with the employees and obtains the employees’ consent prior to making any amendments to their terms of employment.

Mauritius - BLC Robert & Associates

Yes, however, any terms renegotiated must be with consent of the employee.

Morocco - BFR & Associés

Article 230 of the Moroccan Code of Obligations and Contracts provides that duly formed contractual obligations may be revoked only with the mutual consent of both parties. An employment contract would fall under this provision. Therefore, terms of employment such as working hours, remuneration and leave days entitlement can be renegotiated during this period provided the employer consults with the employees prior to making any amendments to their terms of employment.

In the event of a modification of an essential element of the employment contract by the employer (such as changes to the employee’s social functions or remuneration) the employee’s consent must be sought prior to effecting the amendments.

Nigeria - G.Elias & Co.

An employer cannot unilaterally re-write the employment contract. The employer can amend or vary the terms of employment with the consent of the employee.

Rwanda - K. Solutions & Partners

Any term of employment such as working hours, remuneration and leave days entitlement can be renegotiated during this period provided the employer consults with the employees prior to making any amendments to their terms of employment, as required under article 14 of the Labour Law and obtains their consent to the changes.

Tanzania - A&K Tanzania

Yes, with consultation and consent. Section 15(4) of the Employment Act requires employers to consult with their employees where any term and condition of employment changes and to notify the employees of the change in writing. Although the provisions of the Employment Act are silent on whether the consent of the employees is required before the change can be effected, best practices suggest that consent of the employee should be obtained.  Accordingly, following consultation, the employers should document the consent of the employees with regard to any changes to the terms of employment, such as working hours, remuneration, leave days, etc.

Uganda - MMAKS Advocates

Any term of employment such as working hours, remuneration and leave day entitlement can be renegotiated during this period provided the employer consults with the employees prior to making any amendments to their terms of employment and the employee expressly agrees to the changes. An employer is required under Section 59 (4) of the Employment Act to issue a written notice of such changes to the employee.

Zambia - Musa Dudhia & Co.

Any term of employment such as working hours and remuneration can be renegotiated during this period provided the employer consults with the employees prior to making any amendments to their terms of employment as any adverse variation to the basic terms of the contract without the consent of the employee will terminate the contract on grounds of redundancy and entitle the employee to a redundancy payment of not less than 2 months’ basic pay for each year served. An employer should also note that statutory entitlements such as sick leave, annual leave, family responsibility leave etc. cannot be renegotiated to provide for lower than the minimums prescribed in the Employment Code Act.

UAE - Anjarwalla Collins & Haidermota

Any term of employment such as working hours, remuneration and leave days entitlement can be renegotiated during this period provided the employer consults with the employees prior to making any amendments to their terms of employment, as required under the UAE Labour Law and obtains their consent to the changes.

Can employees be asked to reduce the number of hours they work so that they are paid based on the number of hours worked (salary is reduced accordingly)?

Algeria - Bourabiat Associés

Yes, an employer may request the employees to reduce the number of hours they work so that they are paid based on the number of hours worked.

However, an employer must consult with the employees prior to making any amendments to their working hours and salaries, as required under Law n°90-11 as amended article 63. The employer must obtain the consent of the employees to any changes made to their working hours and slaaries before these changes are effected.

It is recommended that employers document the consent of the employees and the reasons for the reduction of their working hours and salaries.

Ethiopia - Mesfin Tafesse & Associates

Yes, however, this will require the prior agreement of the employee. The employer should consult with the employees prior to making any amendments to employment contracts, including wages and working hours.

Kenya - Anjarwalla & Khanna

Yes, an employer may request the employees to reduce the number of hours they work so that they are paid based on the number of hours worked. However, an employer must consult with the employees prior to making any amendments to their working hours and to their salaries, as required under Section 10 (5) of the Employment Act.

The employees’ consent must also be obtained before effecting such changes. Employers should document the consent of the employees and the reasons for the reduction of the working hours and salaries.

Malawi - Savjani & Co.

Where wages paid to employees are fixed by the hour, an employer may request the employees to reduce the number of hours they work so that they are paid based on the number of hours worked. However, an employer must consult with the employees prior to making any amendments to their working hours. The employees’ consent must be obtained before effecting such changes. Employers should document the consent of the employees and the reasons for the reduction of the working hours and consequently salaries.

Employers would to renegotiate the terms of employment for employees that are not paid by the hour and reduce their wages or have their wages fixed by the hour subject to the employees’ consent.

Mauritius - BLC Robert & Associates

In the absence of mutual consent, the employer may require the employee to work temporarily for a shorter time than specified in the employment contract at a reduced pay, subject to the approval of the supervising officer of the Ministry of Labour.

Morocco - BFR & Associés

Yes, in accordance with Article 185 of the Labor Code, an employer can reduce the number of hours under the following conditions:

  • Where the reduction of the number of hours (whether continuous or discontinuous) does not exceed 60 days in the year;
  • When such decision is taken by the company, the normal working time cannot exceed 10 hours per day;
  • salary, must be paid according to the actual working time, while guaranteeing a minimum of 50% of the normal salary; and
  • the decision to reduce the number of hours cannot be taken without prior consultation with the social partners of the company (employee representatives or union representatives).

Nigeria - G.Elias & Co.

Ordinarily no, since working hours are mutually agreed upon and prescribed in the employment contract. An employer can request an employee to work fewer hours for less pay. However, the consent of the employee is required for such reduction to be considered to be lawful. Otherwise, the same will be treated as redundancy.

Rwanda - K. Solutions & Partners

Yes, an employer may ask the employees to reduce the number of hours they work so that they are paid based on the number of hours worked. However, an employer must consult with the employees prior to making any amendments to their working hours and to their salaries, as required under article 14 of the Labour Law. The employees’ consent must also be obtained before effecting such changes. Employers should document the consent of the employees and the reasons for the reduction of the working hours and salaries.

Tanzania - A&K Tanzania

Yes. An employer may request the employees to reduce the number of hours they work so that they are paid based on the number of hours worked. However, an employer must consult with the employees prior to making any amendments to their working hours and to their salaries, as required under Section 15 (4) of the Employment Act. Although the provisions of the Employment Act are silent on whether the consent of the employees is required before the change can be effected, best practices suggest that consent of the employee should be obtained.  Accordingly, following consultation, employers should document the consent of the employees and the reasons for the reduction of the working hours and corresponding salary reduction.

Uganda - MMAKS Advocates

Yes, an employer may request the employees to reduce the number of hours they work so that they are paid based on the number of hours worked. However, an employer must consult with the employees prior to making any amendments to their working hours and to their salaries. The employees’ consent must also be obtained before effecting such changes. Employers should document the consent of the employees.

Zambia - Musa Dudhia & Co.

This may be possible for casual contracts for a period not exceeding 6 months as such contracts provide for payment at an hourly rate. However, contracts of employment for periods longer than 6 months usually provide for payment monthly in arrears and in respect of any incomplete month of employment, an apportioned part of the monthly salary, as opposed to payment based on hours worked.

In this regard an employee will, subject to any overtime, receive the same monthly pay regardless of hours worked. Further, calculation/payment of wages at an hourly rate is a characteristic of casual contracts and converting a contract of employment for a period longer than 6 months into one where wages are calculated daily may be argued to be casualisation which is prohibited under the Employment Code Act No. 3 of 2019 (the “Employment Code Act”).

Regardless of whether or not employees will be working shorter hours, an employer who wishes to reduce the salary of an employee should reduce the salary based on the monthly salary payable and not in reference to hours worked and should obtain the consent of the employee before effecting such a reduction. Effecting a reduction to the salary without an employee’s consent will terminate the contract by reason of redundancy and entitle an employee to a redundancy payment of not less than 2 months basic pay for every year served.

Another option available to an employer is to convert the contract of employment into a flexible contract which provides for flexibility of working hours. This is justifiable casualisation under the Employment Code Act. However, such conversion can only be done with the consent of the employee.

UAE - Anjarwalla Collins & Haidermota

Yes, an employer may request the employees to reduce the number of hours they work so that they are paid based on the number of hours worked. However, an employer must consult with the employees prior to making any amendments to their working hours and to their salaries, as required under Chapter 5 of the UAE Labour Law. The employees’ consent must also be obtained before effecting such changes. Employers should document the consent of the employees and the reasons for the reduction of the working hours and salaries. A Temporary Addendum or a Labour Contract Modification Form (as the case may be) must also be entered into to reflect the amended terms of employment.

What duty of care does an employer owe to their employees during this time? Accordingly, what liabilities arise on an employer if an employee is infected at the place of work?

Algeria - Bourabiat Associés

Law 88-07 imposes a legal obligation on employers to take various measures to ensure that the workplace is safe for all employees. Employers must therefore put in place measures to protect their employees from the spread of COVID-19 at the workplace.

If an employee is infected at the place of work, an employer can be liable under Law No. 83-13 of 2 July 1983 (as amended on accidents at work and professional diseases) , and required to compensate  the employee for work related infections.

However, infections resulting from the deliberate and wilful misconduct of the employee are however excluded.

Ethiopia - Mesfin Tafesse & Associates

The Ethiopian Labour Proclamation imposes a legal obligation on employers to take various measures to ensure that the workplace is safe for all employees. Employers must therefore put in place measures to protect their employees from the spread of COVID-19 at the workplace in line with national and international guidelines. Further, the COVID-19 workplace protocol issued by the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs on 18 March 2020 (the MOLSA Protocol) provides that employers should:

  • provide protective gear, water and sanitary materials;
  • eliminate congestion, maintain physical distancing, avoid face to face meetings, and provide information on prevention methods to employees; and
  • follow up, control and reporting systems for COVID-19 cases in the workplace.

Pursuant to Article 185 (2) of the Labour Proclamation, an employer that fails to take all necessary occupational safety measures and fails to abide by national standards and directives will be liable to a fine of ETB 10,000-20,000 for a first time offence. If the act is committed more than three times, it may result in the closure of the employer’s undertaking.

Kenya - Anjarwalla & Khanna

The Occupational Health and Safety Act, 2007 (OSHA) imposes a legal obligation on employers to take various measures to ensure that the workplace is safe for all employees. Employers must therefore put in place measures to protect their employees from the spread of COVID-19 at the workplace.

If an employee is infected at the place of work, an employer is liable under the Work Injury Benefits Act, 2007 (WIBA) to compensate the employee for work related infections. Infections resulting from deliberate and wilful misconduct of the employee are however excluded.

Malawi - Savjani & Co.

The OSHWA imposes a duty on employers to ensure the safety, health and welfare at work for all persons working at the workplace. Further, the Occupational Safety, Health and Welfare Act, 1997 requires employers to provide and maintain a working environment for employees that is safe, without risks to health. In our view, employers must therefore put in place measures to protect their employees from the spread of COVID-19 at the workplace.

If an employee is infected at the place of work, an employer may be guilty of an offence if it is proven that the employer breached its duties under the Occupational Safety, Health and Welfare Act, 1997. Similarly, the employer may be liable for damages to the employee, where the employee can show that the employer did not take reasonable steps to ensure the health and safety of the employee from limiting exposure to  COVID-19 in the workplace, and as a result, the employee was infected at the workplace due to the employer’s negligence.

Mauritius - BLC Robert & Associates

The Occupational Health and Safety Act, 2005 (OSHA) imposes a legal obligation on employers to take various measures to ensure that the workplace is safe for all employees. Employers must therefore put in place measures to protect their employees from the spread of COVID-19 at the workplace. A breach of the OSHA may result to a fine of not exceeding MUR 75 000 and imprisonment not exceeding one year.

Morocco - BFR & Associés

Article 281 of the Labor Code imposes a legal obligation on employers to take certain measures to ensure that workplace is safe for all employees.

Employers must therefore put in place measures to protect their employees from the spread of COVID-19 at the workplace.

In order to protect the safety and health of employees, the employer must contact the health services concerned if an employee becomes infected with COVID-19 to make the necessary arrangements.

The guideline published by the Minister of Labor gives employers the right to measure an employee’s temperature before they access the company’s premises.

Nigeria - G.Elias & Co.

Employers have obligations to:

  1. provide a safe work environment;
  2. observe health and safety measures; and
  3. ensure the safety of the employees. 

The liability of an employer for breaches of these duties would depend on the losses sustained by the employee as a result of such breach.  For persons working in factories (mainly those involved in manufacturing), section 45 of the Factories Act 1987 mandates the occupiers and owners of factories to provide a safe work environment and observe health and safety measures in relation to persons who work in their factories. Contravention of the provisions of the Factories Act attracts penalties ranging from N500 (less than US$2) to N5,000 (approx. US$14) or imprisonment.

Rwanda - K. Solutions & Partners

The Rwandan Labour Law imposes a legal obligation on employers to take various measures to ensure that the workplace is safe for all employees for all persons who frequent the enterprise. The employer has the obligation to provide every person entering an area in an enterprise where he/she is likely to be exposed to the risk of injury or harm from contamination, with suitable protective equipment and instructions for their use and to verify that they are used. Employers must therefore put in place measures to protect their employees from the spread of COVID-19 at the workplace.

If an employee is infected at the place of work, the employer may declare to the management of the social security body in Rwanda and to the Inspectorate of Labour where the enterprise is located in accordance with social security laws.

Tanzania - A&K Tanzania

The Occupational Health and Safety Act, 2003 imposes a legal obligation on employers to take various measures to ensure that the workplace is safe for all employees. Employers must therefore put in place measures to protect their employees from the spread of COVID-19 at the workplace. It is possible that an employer may be found liable under OSHA if they have breached their obligations thereunder, whether or not an employee is infected at the place of work.

Uganda - MMAKS Advocates

The Occupational Safety and Health Act, 2006 (OSHA) imposes a legal obligation on employers to take various measures to ensure that the workplace is safe for all employees. Employers must therefore put in place measures to protect their employees from the spread of COVID-19 at the workplace.

Contravention of any provision of OSHA is an offence for which the person charged would upon conviction be liable to a fine not exceeding Ugx 480,000 or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 12 months.

If an employee is infected at the place of work, an employer is liable under the Workers Compensation Act, Cap 225 to compensate the employee for work related infections or injuries. Infections or injuries resulting from deliberate and wilful misconduct of the employee are, however, excluded

Zambia - Musa Dudhia & Co.

Employers have an obligation to ensure the health and safety of employees at the workplace. The Occupational Health and Safety Act No.36 of 2010 (the “OHSA”) requires employers to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the health, safety and welfare of the employees at the workplace; and to place and maintain the employees in an occupational environment adapted to the employees’ physical, physiological and psychological ability. An employer must, among others:

  1. provide employees with information, instruction, training and supervision;
  2. maintain the workplace in a condition that is safe and without any risk to the health and safety of employees at the workplace; and
  3. provide for measures to deal with emergencies and accidents, including adequate first-aid arrangements.

An employer that contravenes the duties under the OHSA commits an offence and is liable, upon conviction, to a fine not exceeding ZMW150 000 (approximately US$8 823.5) or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding 5 years, or to both. Employers should note that the duties of an employer under the OHSA are extended to third parties who are not employees. An employer is required, so far as is reasonably practicable, to conduct the employer’s undertaking in such a way that persons who are not employed by that employer and who may be affected by activities at the employer’s workplace are not exposed to risks to their health or safety.


An employee who is infected arising out of and in the course of employment is entitled to compensation under the Workers Compensation Act No. 10 of 1999 (the “WCA”). The compensation payable under the WCA is, in respect of employers who contribute to the Workers’ Compensation Fund paid by the Workers Compensation Commissioner and in respect of exempt employers, paid directly by the employer.

The compensation under the WCA does not limit or affect any civil liability of an employer if an employee is infected by the negligence, breach of statutory duty or other wrongful act or omission of the employer or any person for whose act or default the employer is responsible. However, the award of damages in such civil action may be reduced by any compensation paid under the WCA.

UAE - Anjarwalla Collins & Haidermota

The UAE Labour Law imposes a legal obligation on employers to take various measures to ensure that the workplace is safe for all employees. Employers must therefore put in place measures to protect their employees from the spread of COVID-19 at the workplace.

If an employee is infected at the place of work, an employer is liable under the UAE Labour Law to compensate the employee for work related infections. Arguably and pursuant to Article 100 of the UAE Labour Law, infections resulting from deliberate and wilful misconduct of the employee are however excluded.

Employers are also required to ensure that they renew and maintain medical insurance for their employees.

Do employers still need to pay full salaries to employees if the nature of their job is that they are unable to work remotely but need to stay home to be safe from the virus?

Algeria - Bourabiat Associés

Yes, employers still need to pay full salaries to employees if the nature of their job is such that they are unable to work remotely but need to stay at home to be safe from COVID-19.

However, in the case of employees working for bars, restaurants, and leisure facilities which have been shut down due to COVID-19, Article 5 of Decree 20-69 dated 21 March 2020 provides that  these employees will not be paid during the period when their places of work are shut down.

Ethiopia - Mesfin Tafesse & Associates

This would need to be agreed upon between the employer and employee. If the employee has outstanding leave days, the employee may use those days for staying at home. As noted in the COVID-19 workplace protocol issued by the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs on 18 March 2020 (the MOLSA Protocol), the employer may also agree to allow upcoming leave days to be granted.

Malawi - Savjani & Co.

Yes, unless otherwise agreed with the employee, employers still need to pay full salaries to employees if the nature of their job is that they are unable to work remotely but need to stay at home to be safe from the virus.

Nigeria - G.Elias & Co.

This would depend on the contract of employment. Generally, employers still have the obligation to pay full salaries to employees even where the nature of their job is such that they are unable to work remotely but need to stay at home to be safe from COVID-19. However, where the contract of employment provides otherwise, the parties would resort to such provisions.

General

Yes, employers still need to pay full salaries to employees if the nature of their job is that they are unable to work remotely but need to stay at home to be safe from the virus.

UAE - Anjarwalla Collins & Haidermota

Yes, employers still need, unless otherwise agreed with the employees as set out above, to pay full salaries to employees if the nature of their job is that they are unable to work remotely but need to stay at home to be safe from COVID-19. In this context, an employer can explore the option of placing employees on forced annual leave in order to reduce its liability of outstanding leave days as and when business resumes.

Can employees who cannot work remotely be forced to take annual leave during this period?

Algeria - Bourabiat Associés

Employees who cannot work remotely can be forced to take annual leave during this period.

Ethiopia - Mesfin Tafesse & Associates

Yes, employees who cannot work remotely can be forced to take annual leave as advised by the COVID-19 workplace protocol issued by the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs on 18 March 2020 (the MOLSA Protocol).

Kenya - Anjarwalla & Khanna

Yes, employees who cannot work remotely can be forced to take annual leave during this period. However, the consent of the affected employees should be sought.

Malawi - Savjani & Co.

Yes, employees who cannot work remotely can be forced to take annual leave during this period. However, employers must first consult the affected employees, as discussed in the response to question 6 above.

Mauritius - BLC Robert & Associates

Employers may terminate employees’ employment contracts on account of redundancy provided they have reasonable cause and are able to demonstrate that there is a valid justification for the proposed redundancy. Any redundancy must be carried out in strict compliance with the statutory process laid down in the Workers’ Rights Act 2019.

Morocco - BFR & Associés

No, employees who cannot work remotely cannot be forced to take annual leave during this period. The consent of the affected employees should be sought.

Nigeria - G.Elias & Co.

No, employees who cannot work remotely cannot be forced to take their annual leave during this period unless the contract of employment provides otherwise. However, the parties can agree to have the affected employees take their leave during this period.

Tanzania - A&K Tanzania

Yes. Employees who cannot work remotely can be required to take annual leave during this period. However, an employer must consult with the employees as required under section 15 (4) of the Employment Act and best practices suggest that their consent should also be obtained before effecting the changes.

Zambia - Musa Dudhia & Co.

Yes, employees who cannot work remotely can be forced to take annual leave during this period. However, the consent of the affected employees should be sought. If the employees are utilizing annual leave days, such leave will be paid. If the employees are placed on forced leave the employees must be paid their basic salary during the period of the forced leave.

UAE - Anjarwalla Collins & Haidermota

Yes, an employer is under the UAE Labour Law entitled to force employees to take their annual leave. However, the COVID-19 Employment Resolution appears to suggest that the employee’s consent is required. We would suggest that the leave arrangement is documented properly.

Can employers make employees redundant merely due to the fact that a pandemic exists?

Algeria - Bourabiat Associés

Termination of the employment relationship may be due to redundancy provided that it is justified and follows the process provided under the law. The existence of a pandemic would not constitute a ground for dismissal.

Kenya - Anjarwalla & Khanna

Employers may terminate employees’ employment contracts on account of redundancy provided that they believe that it is for a reasonable cause and that they are able to demonstrate that there is a valid justification for the proposed redundancy.

Malawi - Savjani & Co.

Employers may terminate employees’ employment contracts due to operational requirements (which includes retrenchment and redundancy) provided that they believe that the termination is for a reasonable cause and that they are able to demonstrate that there is a valid justification for the proposed termination.

The Employment Act, 2000 does not provide for the procedure for terminating employment due to operational requirements. Case law has provided conflicting positions in relation to the steps that should be taken by employers in order for such a termination to be deemed fair. In our view, employers should ensure that they provide affected employees with adequate notice of their intention to terminate their employment due to operational requirements. Following this, the employers must consult with the affected employees prior to making the decision. The concerned employee must be given an opportunity to make representations on the subject and where possible, the employer together with the employees must find ways of ameliorating the negative outcome of the employer’s decision.

Morocco - BFR & Associés

Employers may terminate employees’ employment contracts on account of redundancy provided that they believe that it is for a reasonable cause and that they are able to demonstrate that there is a valid justification for the proposed redundancy.

Under Article 66 et seq of the Labor Code, an employer may proceed with a redundancy for economic reasons according subject to the following procedure:

  • the employer must first inform the employee’s delegates or the union representatives of the Company, at least one month before proceeding with the economic redundancy  of the employees, while bringing to their attention the necessary information relating to the reasons, employees concerned etc.;
  • the employer must then negotiate with the social representatives and draft minutes of the meeting noting down the results of the consultations and negotiations. A copy of the minutes must be delivered to the provincial delegate responsible for labor.
  • In addition, Article 67 of the Labor Code requires that a redundancy for economic reasons can only be carried out with an authorization issued by the governor of the prefecture or province.

However, practically, this authorization is never delivered and as a result a dismissal on this basis without the authorization is likely to be ddeemed to be abusive and give rise to a full severance package.

Please note that once the company resumes its operations, employees previously made redundant for economic reasons must be taken back by the company with priority being given to them for one year.

Nigeria - G.Elias & Co.

Employers can only make employees providing manual and clerical labour redundant if the pandemic results in “excess of manpower”. In such a situation, the applicable statutory provisions regarding “redundancy” as set out in the Labour Act, 1971 would ordinarily have to be complied with. 

We say “ordinarily” because arguably there is true redundancy only to the extent that there is no work for employees, not simply because the employer is having financial difficulties or there is a pandemic. The statute is silent on how long the lack of work needs to have lasted or is likely to last.  It is also silent on the minimum number of employees that have to be let go for the default rules on the termination of a single employee with notice to be displaced.

The Labour Act provides that the employer would have to:

  1. engage the trade union (for unionised employees only) or the workers’ representatives (for unskilled and manual workers only);
  2. adopt the “last in, first out” principle in disengaging the employees; and
  3. negotiate and pay the termination and redundancy benefits agreed with the union or representatives as the case may be.

For other categories of employees, the provisions of their contracts of employment as to termination with notice or payment of salary in lieu of notice will apply. Where the contracts are silent, termination with one month’s notice or salary in lieu of notice is the default rule for employees earning monthly salaries.

Rwanda - K. Solutions & Partners

Employers may terminate employees’ employment contracts on account of redundancy provided that they believe that it is for a reasonable cause and that they are able to demonstrate that there is a valid justification for the proposed redundancy which must be conducted in accordance with the Labour Law.

Tanzania - A&K Tanzania

Employers may terminate employees’ employment contracts on account of redundancy provided that the procedural and substantive obligations set out in the Employment Act and the Employment and Labour Relations (Code of Good Practice) Rules, 2007 are met. Rule 23(1) of the Code of Good Practice provides that a retrenchment can arise from the operational requirements of an employer. The Employment Act defines an operational requirement as a requirement based on the economic, technological, structural or similar needs of the employer. Therefore, to the extent that an employer can demonstrate that COVID-19 has impacted the employer’s operational requirements, then it may be considered as a factor in the proposed redundancy.

Uganda - MMAKS Advocates

Employers may terminate employees’ employment contracts on account of redundancy (due to economic reasons) provided that they believe that it is for a reasonable cause and that they are able to demonstrate that there is a valid justification for the proposed redundancy.

Zambia - Musa Dudhia & Co.

Employers may terminate employees’ employment contracts on account of redundancy provided that the pandemic results in (i) the employer ceasing or intending to cease to carry on the business by virtue of which the employees are engaged or (ii) results in the business ceasing or diminishing or expected ceasing or diminishing the requirement for the employees to carry out work of a particular kind in the place where the employees are engaged.

UAE - Anjarwalla Collins & Haidermota

The COVID-19 Employment Resolution has introduced some form of redundancy which did not previously exist under UAE laws. Employers affected by the precautionary measures adopted to curb the COVID-19 pandemic and who wish to reorganize their workforce, are required to register their surplus employees on the Virtual Labour Market System so that such employees can be considered for employment by other employers who require additional employees. However, such employers are required to continue paying the surplus employees’ housing allowance and all other allowances save for basic salary.

If an employer does not wish to register its surplus employees on the Virtual Labour Market System, then the employer can dismiss such employees. However, since the concept of redundancy is not, except to the extent explained above, recognised under the UAE Labour Law, such dismissal will be considered to be an arbitrary dismissal and the employee may be required to make compensatory payment which can extend to 3 months’ last drawn salary of the employee plus all end of service benefits and accrued leave.

What is the position on sick leave?

Algeria - Bourabiat Associés

Under Algerian law, sick/disability leave and any related compensation in sick/disability leave periods are compensated by the social security (Caisse Nationale d'Assurances Sociales des travailleurs salariés or CNAS).

Therefore, employers are not obliged to compensate employees for sick/disability leave.

Ethiopia - Mesfin Tafesse & Associates

Under Ethiopian labour law, a distinction is made between managerial and non-managerial employees for the purpose of sick leave.

  1. For non-managerial employees, an employee is entitled to a total of 6 months’ sick leave from which the first one month is 100% paid, the second two months are at 50% pay and the last three months are without pay.
  2. For a managerial employee who has at least served for 3 months, the employee  is entitled to 15 days of sick leave with half pay, while an employee that has served for 1 year or more is entitled to one-month of sick leave with half pay.

Kenya - Anjarwalla & Khanna

The Employment Act provides that after 2 consecutive months of service, an employee shall be entitled to sick leave of not less than 7 days with full pay and thereafter to sick leave of 7 days with half pay, in each period of 12 consecutive months of service. This is the statutory minimum entitlement for employees to sick leave. However, the Regulation Of Wages (General) Order provides that employees are entitled to 30 days’ sick leave with full pay and thereafter a maximum of 15 days’ sick leave with half pay.

Employers may therefore choose a period within the periods set out in the Employment Act and the General Wages Order. These provisions do appear to be contradictory and the Courts have given different interpretations. Recent Court decisions have ruled in favour of the interpretation that employers should provide 30 days’ sick leave with full pay and 15 days’ sick leave with half pay on the basis that since the provision in the General Wages Order is more advantageous to employees, employers are expected to apply them in calculating sick leave.

Malawi - Savjani & Co.

Section 46 of the Employment Act 2000 provides that after completing twelve (12) months’ of continuous service, an employee is entitled to at least four (4) weeks’ sick leave on full pay and eight (8) weeks’ sick leave on half pay during each year.

During sick leave, an employee shall be paid the normal rate of wages.
An employer shall not be bound to grant sick leave unless the employee produces a certificate from a registered medical practitioner stating the nature of the employee’s incapacity.

Morocco - BFR & Associés

Articles 271 to 273 of the Labor Code provide that an employee must inform the employer within 48 hours in the event they are unable to report to work owing to an illness or an accident, except where the impossibility is due to force majeure.

The extension of the absence must be justified. If an employee cannot return to work on the scheduled date, he must send his employer an extension medical certificate before the end of the 4-day period.

The maximum period granted to absent employees for prolonged and justified illness is 180 days in the same year after which the employee shall be deemed to have resigned.

Absence of the employee for illness or accident results in the suspension of the employment contract. Consequently, remuneration is suspended unless otherwise provided for in the employment contract, collective agreement or rules of procedure.

The deduction from salary may be made per hour of absence, even if the employee is paid on a monthly basis.

Nigeria - G.Elias & Co.

Section 16 of the Labour Act 1971 provides that workers (comprising manual and unskilled employees) are entitled to be paid wages up to 12 working days in any one calendar year during absence from work caused by temporary illness certified by a registered medical practitioner.

Sick leave entitlement for other classes of employees would depend on the terms of the contract of employment.

Rwanda - K. Solutions & Partners

The Rwandan Labour Law provides for a short term sick leave of 15 days maximum. After 15 consecutive day, an employee shall be entitled to a long term sick leave of 6 months maximum, of which the first 3 months are paid sick leave. The last 3 month sare unpaid sick leave, during which the employment contract is suspended. This is the statutory minimum entitlement for employees on sick leave.

Tanzania - A&K Tanzania

The Employment Act provides that an employee is entitled to 126 days of sick leave in any leave cycle of 36 months, calculated as follows: full wages shall be paid for the first 63 days; and half wages shall be paid for the additional 63 days. An employer shall not be required to pay an employee for sick leave if: the employee fails to produce a medical certificate issued by a registered medical practitioner deemed acceptable by the employer, whose acceptance shall not be unreasonably withheld; or the employee is entitled to paid leave under any law, fund, or collective agreement. The Association of Tanzania Employers (ATE) recently advised that employees following official directives to self-isolate if they have COVID-19 symptoms may have difficulty obtaining an excuse from duty form from a medical practitioner and therefore employers may need to consider some flexibility.

Uganda - MMAKS Advocates

The Employment Act provides that an employee who has completed not less than one month’s continuous service who is incapable of work because of sickness is entitled to sick pay, i.e., full wages and every other benefit for self and family for the first month. An employer can terminate an employee on this basis only after the third consecutive month of absence from work.

Zambia - Musa Dudhia & Co.

The Employment Code Act No. 3 of 2019 (the “Employment Code Act”) entitles employees on contracts for a period not exceeding 1 year to sick leave at the rate of 26 working days at full pay and thereafter at half pay for the next 26 working days. Employees on contracts for a period longer than 1-year, permanent employees, and employees falling under the Minimum Wages and Conditions of Employment Orders for general workers and shop workers are entitled to sick leave at the rate of 3 months at full pay and thereafter at half pay for the next 3 months.

If the employees (not being employees falling under the Minimum Wages and Conditions of Employment Orders) were employed before 10 May 2019 and have not transitioned to the provisions of the Employment Code Act, the sick leave applicable is that under the old Employment Act Chapter 269 of the Laws of Zambia which is 26 working days per year. Employers should note that employees engaged after 10 May 2019 are entitled to the sick leave under the Employment Code Act and that they have up to 9 May 2020 to ensure that the contracts of employment of employees engaged before 9 May 2019 are amended to provide for the sick leave under the Employment Code Act.

UAE - Anjarwalla Collins & Haidermota

The UAE Labour Law provides that after 3 consecutive months of service (in the case an employee was placed on probation, the 3 consecutive months of service start running after expiry of the probation period), an employee shall be entitled to sick leave of not less than 15 days with full pay, 30 days with half pay, and thereafter to sick leave with no pay, in each period of 12 consecutive months of service, provided that the aggregate sick leave (whether consecutive or non-consecutive) shall not exceed 90 days in each period of 12 consecutive months of service. This is the statutory minimum entitlement for employees’ sick leave.

What is an employee entitled to when they are working remotely? What are the benefits an employee is entitled to when working remotely?

Algeria - Bourabiat Associés

Employees are entitled to their usual employment benefits as stipulated under their employment contracts when they are working remotely.

Ethiopia - Mesfin Tafesse & Associates

There are no legal prescriptions that provide any entitlement for employees working remotely. Given this gap, employees are entitled to their normal employment benefits as stipulated under their employment contracts (such as salaries and leave entitlements etc.) when they are working remotely. They would not, however, be entitled to benefits that require their physical presence at the workplace (such as transport to the office benefits, free lunch etc.).

Malawi - Savjani & Co.

Employees are entitled to their usual employment benefits as stipulated under their employment contracts when they are working remotely.

If there is need to provide the employee with additional resources (such as computers or mobile phones) to enable the employee to work from home, the employer should consider providing the same.

Mauritius - BLC Robert & Associates

Employees are entitled to their usual employment benefits as stipulated under their employment contracts (such as salaries and leave entitlements etc.) when they are working remotely. They would not, however, be entitled to benefits that require that they are physically present at the workplace such as transport if there is a clear provision in the employment agreement to the effect that the transport allowance is for attending work.

Morocco - BFR & Associés

Remote work is not specifically regulated in Morocco. Article 8 of the Labor Code simply refers to homework which does not fully correspond to the concept of remote work but rather domestic work.

Remote work is possible provided that it complies with the health and safety measures provided for in Decree No 262.12.2 of 10 July 2012. The Ministry of Employment in its guide (www.work.gov.ma) provides that employees must also benefit from insurance against industrial accidents. The agreement for the use of remote work may affect the benefits acquired previously by the employee.

Nigeria - G.Elias & Co.

Employees are entitled to their usual employment benefits as stipulated under their employment contracts (such as salaries and leave entitlements) when they work remotely.

However, they would not be entitled to reimbursements of expenses that require their physical presence at the workplace, such as transport costs and lunch. In most cases, allowances relating to these additional benefits are integrated into the employees’ salaries and are not true reimbursements. They will therefore remain payable to employees whether the employees go to work or not.

General

Employees are entitled to their usual employment benefits as stipulated under their employment contracts (such as salaries and leave entitlements etc.) when they are working remotely. They would not, however, be entitled to benefits that require that they are physically present at the workplace (such as transport to the office benefits, free lunch etc.)

UAE - Anjarwalla Collins & Haidermota

Employees are entitled to their usual employment benefits as stipulated under their labour and/or employment contracts (such as salaries and leave entitlements) when they are working remotely.

Should an employer have a written COVID-19 policy?

Ethiopia - Mesfin Tafesse & Associates

Yes. The COVID-19 workplace protocol issued by the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs on 18 March 2020 (the MOLSA Protocol) encourages employers to have a written COVID-19 policy as a measure to help protect workers from infection and protect employers from liability.

Malawi - Savjani & Co.

Section 13 (3) of the OSHWA   provides that it is the duty of employers to prepare, and as often as may be appropriate revise, a written statement of the general policy with respect to the safety and health at workplace of their employees. In our view, employers should prepare a written policy statement or update existing policies  to provide for safety and health measures at the workplace in light of COVID-19.

Morocco - BFR & Associés

Yes, it is recommended for employers to have a written COVID-19 policy as a measure to help protect workers from infection and protect employers from liability.

Zambia - Musa Dudhia & Co.

Yes, it is recommended for employers to have a written COVID-19 policy as a measure to help protect workers from infection and protect employers from liability. This will also help the employer discharge their duty under the Occupational Health & Safety Act No. 36 of 2010 to provide information, instruction, training and supervision to employees to ensure the health and safety of the employees at the workplace. An employer of 10 or more employees should ensure that they consult the health and safety representative elected by the employees on the health and safety committee on the COVID-19 policy.

General

Yes, it is recommended for employers to have a written COVID-19 policy as a measure to help protect workers from infection and protect employers from liability.

Can any employer reduce its workforce because of COVID19? What would be the entitlement of employees whose contracts have been terminated as a result of reduction of workforce?

Ethiopia - Mesfin Tafesse & Associates

Under the State of Emergency Regulation No. 03/2020, an employer is prohibited from terminating contracts of employment for the duration of the State of Emergency subject to the conditions to be laid out by the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs. The Ministry has not issued such a directive. The COVID-19 workplace protocol issued by the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs on 18 March 2020 (the MOLSA Protocol) provides that employers should take measures short of terminating contracts.

Under the Labour Proclamation, an employer would have good cause to terminate a contract of employment if the following occurs:

  1. Any event which entails direct and permanent cessation of the employee’s activities in whole or in part:
  2. There is less demand for the products or services provided by the employer resulting in the reduction of the amount of work or profits of the undertaking.

To the extent COVID-19 results in either one of the conditions above, the employer will be entitled to reduce the work force by terminating their contracts of employment. However, in terms of determining the workforce to be reduced and retained, the labour law provides guidance taking into account factors such as skills, productivity, gender, people with disability, longevity of services and expectant mothers.

Employees who have completed their probation and whose contracts have been terminated as a result of reduction of work will be entitled to severance payment and payment of 60 days’ wage.  Under previous directives issued by the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs regarding reduction of employees under normal circumstances, the employer also has an obligation to take a series of notification and consultation measures with relevant labour offices where the employer is located.

Would directors and officers be held liable for not doing enough if someone caught the virus and spread to other staff members?

Algeria - Bourabiat Associés

Yes, directors and officers of the employer may be held liable under Law 88-07 for not undertaking sufficient protective measuresif someone caught the virus and spread to other staff members.

Ethiopia - Mesfin Tafesse & Associates

Yes. Under the Labour Proclamation, the employer and managerial employees would be liable if they compel the employee to execute any task that is hazardous to life.

Kenya - Anjarwalla & Khanna

Yes, directors and officers may be held liable under the Occupational Health and Safety Act, 2007 (OSHA) for not doing enough if someone caught the virus and spread to other staff members.

Malawi - Savjani & Co.

Yes, Section 82 (5) of the OSHWA provides that where an offence committed by a company is proved to have been committed with the consent or connivance or had been facilitated by any neglect on the part of any chairman, director, manager, secretary or other officer of the company, that person, as well as the company, shall be deemed to be guilty of the offence.

In our view, this provision may apply where chairpersons, directors, managers, secretaries or other officers of a company cannot demonstrate that they took sufficient measures and someone contracts  COVID- 19 and spreads it to other staff members.

Mauritius - BLC Robert & Associates

Yes. Any person who, at the time of the commission of the offence, was concerned in with the management of the body corporate could be held liable unless he shows that the offence was committed without his knowledge and/or that he took all reasonable steps to prevent the commission of the office.

Morocco - BFR & Associés

The Labor Code contains some provisions relating to safety and health at work as a result of Morocco’s ratification of the Convention Concerning The Promotional Framework For Occupational Safety and Health. Therefore, the employer has a general obligation pursuant to Article 24 of the Labor Code.

An employer is required to take all the necessary measures to protect the safety, health and dignity of employees in the performance of their duties. The employer has an obligation to inform the employees about the legal provisions and protective measures put in place concerning the preservation of health and safety.

In addition, under Article 281 of the Labor Code, an employer must protect the health of employees by ensuring that they work in a safe place which does not harm their health.

The Moroccan High Court stated in its decision N°1611 of 17 November 2011 that the health and safety rules are of public order. Consequently, their violation constitutes a fault liable to give rise to a penalty.

As a result, an employer may be held liable for violations of the provisions relating to health and safety measures, in a civil case as well as a criminal case.

In the event the employer has implemented all the necessary measures, the employer should not be held liable in the unfortuante event that an employee catches the virus on their premises.

Nigeria - G.Elias & Co.

Directors and officers of an employer may be held liable for failure to provide a safe working environment if an employee contracted COVID-19 and infected other employees in the workplace.

Rwanda - K. Solutions & Partners

Yes, directors and officers may be held liable under the Labour Law for not doing enough if someone caught the virus and it spread to other staff members.

Tanzania - A&K Tanzania

Yes, directors and officers may be held liable under the Occupational Health and Safety Act, 2003 (OSHA) for not doing enough if someone caught the virus and spread it to other staff members.

Zambia - Musa Dudhia & Co.

Yes, directors and officers may be held liable under the Occupational Health and Safety Act No. 36 of 2010 (OSHA) for not doing enough if someone caught the virus and spread to other staff members unless such director of officer proves to the satisfaction of the Court that the act constituting the offence was done without their knowledge, consent or connivance or that they took reasonable steps to prevent the commission of the offence. The penalty, upon conviction, is a fine not exceeding ZMW150 000 (approximately US$8 823.5) or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding 5 years, or to both.

UAE - Anjarwalla Collins & Haidermota

Yes, directors and officers may be held liable under the UAE Labour Law and the UAE Communicable Diseases Law for not doing enough if an employee is diagnosed with COVID-19 and spread to other staff members. Under the UAE Communicable Diseases Law, employers can be fined an amount of up to AED 10,000 and may also face imprisonment for violation of the requirements of the law.

Can an employer make an employee perform other jobs when their core functions are down (for examples, if sales are down)?

Algeria - Bourabiat Associés

An employer must first obtain the employee’s consent prior to making any amendments to their duties and responsibilities as required under Article 63 of Law n°90-11.

Ethiopia - Mesfin Tafesse & Associates

The Ethiopian labour law does not provide a mandatory provision in relation to requiring employees to perform other jobs when their core function is down, except for managerial employees. For managerial employees, the Civil Code provides that an employer may, at any time, where the interest of the undertaking requires, assign a different work to the employee provided there is no reduction in wages.

Kenya - Anjarwalla & Khanna

Yes, an employer may make an employee perform other jobs when their core functions are down. However, an employer must consult with the employee prior to making any amendments to their duties and responsibilities as required under Section 10 (5) of the Employment Act.

Malawi - Savjani & Co.

Yes, an employer may make an employee perform other jobs when their core functions are down.

Often, employment contracts will provide that aside from the employee’s core duties, the employee may be required to perform other duties as instructed by the employer.

However, where an employment contract does not provide for this, the employer must first consult with the employee and obtain the employee’s consent prior to making any amendment to his duties and responsibilities.
Further, fair labour practice would demand that the other duties the employee is made to carry out must be appropriate to the employees’ position.

Mauritius - BLC Robert & Associates

An employer may make an employee perform other jobs when their core functions are down but must consult and obtain the consent of the employee prior to making any amendment to his duties and responsibilities.

Morocco - BFR & Associés

Yes, an employer may make an employee perform other jobs when their core functions are down. However, an employer must consult with the employee prior to making any amendments to their duties and responsibilities as required under Article 230 of the Moroccan Code of Obligations and Contracts, which provides that duly formed contractual obligations may be revoked only with the mutual consent of both parties.

Nigeria - G.Elias & Co.

Yes. An employer may make an employee perform other jobs when their core functions are down where the scope of work indicated in the contract of employment provides so. Otherwise, the employee’s consent must be obtained prior to making any amendments to the employee’s scope of work.

Rwanda - K. Solutions & Partners

Yes, an employer may make an employee perform other jobs when their core functions are down. However, an employer must consult and agree with the employee prior to making any amendments to their duties and responsibilities as required under Section 10 (5) of the Employment article 14 of the Labour Law.

Tanzania - A&K Tanzania

Yes, with consultation and consent. Section 15(4) of the Employment Act requires employers to consult with their employees where any term and condition of employment changes and to notify the employees of the change in writing. Although the provisions of the Employment Act are silent on whether the consent of the employees is required before the change can be effected, best practices indicate that consent of the employee should be obtained. 

Employers should also take into account section 71 of the Occupational Health and Safety Act, 2003, which prohibit employers from subjecting their employees to carrying out work that is not adaptable to their physical and cognitive capabilities and limitations. Accordingly, following consultation, the employers should document the consent of the employees with regard to any change in role and responsibilities.

Uganda - MMAKS Advocates

Yes, an employer may make an employee perform other jobs when their core functions are down. However, an employer must obtain the consent of the employee prior to making any amendments to their duties and responsibilities.

Zambia - Musa Dudhia & Co.

Yes, an employer may make an employee perform other jobs when their core functions are down, especially where the contract allows for an employer to assign the employee other duties other than their core functions. However, an employer must obtain the consent of the employee prior to making any amendments to their duties and responsibilities to avoid any claims of unilateral variation to the terms and conditions of employment without the consent of the employee.

UAE - Anjarwalla Collins & Haidermota

Yes, an employer may make an employee perform other jobs when their core functions are down provided that those other jobs form part of the employee’s duties and responsibilities under their employment contract. If those jobs do not form part of the employee’s duties and responsibilities under the employment contract, then, an employer must consult and obtain consent of the employee prior to making any amendments to their duties and responsibilities (which are stated in the employment contract) as required under the UAE Labour Law.

What should an employer do if an employee doesn't want to come at work because he/she is afraid of being infected at the workplace?

Ethiopia - Mesfin Tafesse & Associates

If the government declares a complete lockdown, the employee has good reason to stay at home. If that is not the case and the employee is considered a key employee and the employer puts in place all work place health and safety measures, the employer may demand the employee to report to work formally. Depending on the response from the employee, the employer could consider a range of measures, such as replacing the employee with a temporary employee willing to substitute, or take administrative action against the employee on the grounds of unauthorised absence.

Malawi - Savjani & Co.

Employees are not allowed to be away from the workplace without cause. Under the Employment Act, 2000, absence from work without permission of the employer and without reasonable excuse is a ground for summary dismissal. Where an employee does not report to work where the situation is deemed safe to do so and the employee has no reasonable basis for the fear of infection, the employer may initiate disciplinary actions for the employee’s absence.

Mauritius - BLC Robert & Associates

Employees are not allowed to be away from the workplace without cause. If the employee believe he is infected, the employee should take his outstanding leave. In the event that the employee does not have any leave and the employer may require the employee to take leave without pay.

Morocco - BFR & Associés

Employees are not allowed to be away from the workplace without cause. Where the employee has no reasonable basis for being absent from the workplace the absence may be deducted from their leave days.

Nigeria - G.Elias & Co.

Employees are not allowed to be away from the workplace without reasonable cause. Where the employee has no reasonable basis for the fear, any absence from work would attract sanctions in accordance with the employment contract. The usual practice is to deduct the day(s) of absence from their leave days or to prorate the salary for the day(s) of absence and deduct the same from the salary. In extreme cases, absence from work without reasonable cause may be a ground for termination of the employment contract.

Rwanda - K. Solutions & Partners

Employees are not allowed to be away from the workplace without cause. Where the employee has no reasonable basis for the fear, any absence should be deducted from their leave days or be a termination reason of the employment contract.

Tanzania - A&K Tanzania

Employees are not allowed to be away from the workplace without cause. If a place of work is authorised to remain open under the law and an employee voluntarily remains away from the workplace without cause (i.e., the absence does not fall within the ambit of leave prescribed under the law, such as sick leave, compassionate leave, or other emergency leave) any absence should be deducted from their annual leave days.

Uganda - MMAKS Advocates

Employees are not allowed to be away from the workplace without authorization or good cause. Where the employee has no reasonable basis for the fear, any absence could be deducted from their leave days or the employee could be deemed to have absconded work.

Zambia - Musa Dudhia & Co.

Employees are not allowed to be away from the workplace without cause.  Where the employee has no reasonable basis for the fear, any absence should be treated in accordance with the disciplinary code in place.

General

Employees are not allowed to be away from the workplace without cause.  Where the employee has no reasonable basis for the fear, any absence should be deducted from their leave days.

UAE - Anjarwalla Collins & Haidermota

In case an employee expresses reservations about going to work in the current situation, the employer should take these concerns seriously and ask for the exact reasons. The employer and employee together can look for possible solutions, such as a modification of the workplace, home office, or paid or unpaid leave. However, the employee has no right to stay away from work because of a general fear of infection and any absence can be deducted from their leave days. It is important to note that in the event the employer is obligating the employee to attend work in breach of the current regulations in place, the employee’s refusal may be considered valid and any action taken against the employee in light of their decision to not attend the workplace may be looked upon unfavourably by the court or MOHRE.

In the event a lock-down, should employees be sent on (a) paid leave for those with leave days; (b) unpaid leave for those who already took their leave; (c) leave with pay to all whether with or without leave days?

Kenya - Anjarwalla & Khanna

Paid leave

An employer may request those employees who have accrued but untaken leave days to proceed on paid leave. Please note, however, that under Kenyan law, the consent of the affected employees should be sought before an employer can require its employees to take their outstanding leave days. Section 10(5) of the Employment Act, 2007 (the Employment Act) requires employers to consult with their employees where any term and condition of employment changes and to notify the employees of the change in writing.

The provisions of the Employment Act refer to consultation but they are silent on whether the consent of the employees is required before the decision can be undertaken. Case law does however provide that the employees’ consent is required before the changes are effected.  Employers should document the consent of the employees and the reasons for proceeding on paid leave.

Unpaid leave for those who already took their leave

An employer may request those employees who have already taken their annual leave to proceed on unpaid leave. However, as advised above, the consent of the affected employees should be sought before taking such action.

There is a risk that even after getting their consent, the employees may argue that they were unduly influenced to agree to the variation of their current terms and conditions of employment. In order to mitigate this risk, employees should: (i) acknowledge that they have not been forced or pressured to the variation of their terms and conditions of employment and they agree to the varied employment contracts voluntarily based on the unprecedented economic distress facing the company and the economy; and (ii) acknowledge that they have been advised to seek independent legal advice. The requirement for independent legal advice is recommended but not mandatory under the law. It may also be practically difficult for employees to obtain such advice in the current environment but should be mentioned so that they are aware of it.

Leave with pay to all whether with or without leave days

An employer is not obligated to request its employees who do not have accrued leave days to proceed on leave with pay. However, it is highly recommended if the company has the financial ability to pay all its employees whilst on leave. In such a scenario, it is advisable that the company informs those employees without leave days, in writing, that their leave will be recovered from their 2021 annual leave days. How this would be regarded in a year from now is anyone’s guess but a court is unlikely to favour this approach if an employee claims leave next year and the employer says he had all the leave in 2020.

If employees were put on reduced salaries, when declaring redundancies during this period, should the employee’s usual salary or reduced salary be used?

Kenya - Anjarwalla & Khanna

The employee’s usual salary before the reduction was effected should be used to calculate the redundancy dues payable to the employee.

An employer cannot use the employee’s reduced salary to calculate the redundancy dues as the reduction in salary would have been a temporary measure effected for a specified period of time in light of the COVID-19 situation.

Are employers allowed to suspend pension contributions during this period?

Kenya - Anjarwalla & Khanna

On 28 April 2020 the Retirement Benefits Authority (RBA) announced that employers can suspend contributions towards pension schemes on the basis of the financial difficulties being experienced by the employers in light of COVID-19.

An employer would need to engage with the RBA and the Trustees of their pension schemes for guidance if they wish to suspend the contributions as each application is considered on a case by case basis. RBA approval must be obtained before suspending the contributions.

What steps can an employer take if an employee refuses to consent to reduction in salary or to proceed on unpaid leave?

Kenya - Anjarwalla & Khanna

If an employee refuses to consent to a request to reduce his/her salary or to proceed on unpaid leave (both of which constitute a change to the terms and conditions of the employee’s employment contract and therefore requires consultation with the employee and his/her consent), no reduction may be made to salary and the employee cannot be forced to proceed on unpaid leave. The employer would need to address whether their financial situation is such that they may consider redundancies.

How much notice is an employer required to give to employees regarding a reduction in pay or unpaid leave?

Kenya - Anjarwalla & Khanna

There is no mandatory or statutory guideline or timeline that an employer should observe in seeking the employee’s consent before reducing salaries or asking an employee to proceed on unpaid leave.

The notice should however be reasonable because consultations should be had with the employee and their consent should be obtained before effecting the changes.

Are there any notices required to be given to any government body of the reduction to employees’ salaries?

Kenya - Anjarwalla & Khanna

There is no requirement to give notices of salary reductions to any government body before effecting the changes.

Are employers required to file any returns with respect to layoffs or employee terminations undertaken during this period?

Kenya - Anjarwalla & Khanna

Employers are required to file returns with the National Employment Authority (NEA) with respect to any employee terminations or layoffs through the National Employment Authority Integrated Management System (www.neaims.go.ke).

All employers are required to have registered with the NEA by 30 June 2019 and are required to file returns with respect to any employee terminations and file an annual return by 31 January each year. Failure to file the returns attracts a fine of up to KES 100,000 and/or a six-month jail term.

Contacts

Arshad Dudhia

Arshad Dudhia

Managing Partner, Musa Dudhia & Co.

Eric Cyaga

Eric Cyaga

Partner, K. Solutions & Partners

Ernest Sembatya

Ernest Sembatya

Partner, MMAKS Advocates

Faith M. Macharia

Faith M. Macharia

Partner, Anjarwalla & Khanna

Foued Bourabiat

Foued Bourabiat

Managing Partner, Bourabiat Associés

Francisco Avillez

Francisco Avillez

Managing Partner, ABCC

Fred Onuobia

Fred Onuobia

Managing Partner, G.Elias & Co.

Geofrey Dimoso

Geofrey Dimoso

Partner, A&K Tanzania

Gil Cambule

Gil Cambule

Partner, ABCC

Jason Harel

Jason Harel

Partner, BLC Robert & Associates

Julien Kavuruganda

Julien Kavuruganda

Partner, K. Solutions & Partners

Krishna Savjani

Krishna Savjani

Managing Partner, Savjani & Co.

Mesfin Tafesse

Mesfin Tafesse

Principal Attorney, Mesfin Tafesse & Associates

Paulo Centeio

Paulo Centeio

Partner, ABCC

Romain Frédéric Rabillard

Romain Frédéric Rabillard

Partner, BFR & Associés

Rosa Nduati-Mutero

Rosa Nduati-Mutero

Partner, Anjarwalla & Khanna

Sahondra Rabenarivo

Sahondra Rabenarivo

Managing Partner, Madagascar Law Office

Salimatou Diallo

Salimatou Diallo

Partner, SD Avocats

Shemane Amin

Shemane Amin

Partner, A&K Tanzania

Sonal Sejpal

Sonal Sejpal

Partner, Anjarwalla & Khanna