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LABOUR UNIONS ACT, 2006.

ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS.

   Section

PART I
PRELIMINARY.

   1.   Commencement.

   2.   Interpretation.

PART II
GENERAL PRINCIPLES OF FREEDOM OF ASSOCIATION.

   3.   Right of employees to organise.

   4.   Employer not to interfere with right of association.

   5.   Offence on contravention of section 4.

   6.   Labour union or employee may bring action.

   7.   Registrar's powers to investigate violation of section 5.

   8.   Restraint of trade clauses.

   9.   Registered federations of labour unions.

   10.   Supply of information.

   11.   Representation on the Labour Advisory Board.

   12.   Labour union branches.

PART III
REGISTRATION OF LABOUR UNIONS.

   13.   Registrar.

   14.   Register of labour unions and other books.

   15.   Application for registration.

   16.   Committee members to be employed in Uganda.

   17.   Confusing names.

   18.   Certificate of registration.

   19.   Refusal of registration.

   20.   Cancellation of registration.

   21.   Appeals.

   22.   Consequences of cancellation of registration.

   23.   Powers of Registrar to interdict or suspend certain officers.

PART IV
RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF REGISTERED ORGANISATION.

   24.   Rights and immunities of a registered organisation.

   25.   Liability in contract.

   26.   Proceedings by and against a registered organisation.

   27.   Trustees of a registered organisation.

   28.   Property vests in trustees.

   29.   Power of a registered organisation to hold land.

   30.   Membership of minors.

   31.   Officers of a registered organisation.

   32.   Voting of members of a registered organisation.

   33.   Annual general meetings.

   34.   Extraordinary general meetings.

   35.   Records of meetings.

   36.   Amalgamation of registered labour unions.

   37.   Registration of amalgamated labour unions.

   38.   Effect of change of name of a registered organisation.

   39.   Registered office and postal address.

   40.   Constitution and rules of a registered organisation.

   41.   Copies of the constitution or rules.

   42.   Notification of officers, etc.

   43.   Notification of dissolution.

   44.   Effect of dissolution.

   45.   Funds of a registered organisation.

   46.   Application of funds.

   47.   Books of accounts, etc.

   48.   Circulation of accounts.

   49.   Resigning or vacation of office by treasurer.

   50.   Annual returns.

   51.   Inspection of accounts and documents.

   52.   Obstructing inspection of the Registrar.

   53.   Power to call for detailed accounts.

PART V
MISCELLANEOUS.

   54.   Offences and penalties.

   55.   Nomination by minors.

   56.   Service of legal process.

   57.   Facts to be notified in the Gazette.

   58.   Regulations.

   59.   Minister's powers to amend Schedules.

   60.   Repeal of Cap. 223.

   61.   Savings.

   62.   Transitional.

   63.   Laws not applicable for registration.

      Schedule 1   Currency point.

      Schedule 2   Matters to be provided for in the constitution or rules of a labour union.

LABOUR UNIONS ACT, 2006.

Commencement: August 7, 2006.

   An Act to regulate the establishment, registration and management of labour unions and to provide for other related matters.

PART I
PRELIMINARY.

1.   Commencement.

   This Act shall come into force on a date to be appointed by the Minister by statutory instrument, and different days may be appointed for the commencement of different provisions.

2.   Interpretation.

   In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires—

   "affiliated union" means a registered labour union affiliated to any federation of labour unions which the Registrar may certify as a registered federation of labour unions;

   "child" means a person who is under the age of 18 years;

   "COFTU" means Central Organisation of Free Trade Unions;

   "currency point" means the value specified in relation to a currency point in Schedule 1;

   "employee" means any person who has entered into a contract of service or a contract of apprenticeship as defined in the Labour Disputes (Arbitration and Settlement) Act and includes a person who is employed by or for the Government of Uganda, including the public service, any local authority or any parastatal organisation but does not include a member of the Uganda Peoples' Defence Forces;

   "employer" means any person or group of persons, including any company or corporation, any public, regional or local authority, any governing body of an unincorporated association, any partnership, any parastatal organisation or any other institution or organisation, for whom an employee works or has worked, or normally worked or sought to work, under a contract of service, and includes the heirs, successors, assignees and transferors of any person or group of persons for whom an employee works, has worked, or normally works;

   "executive committee" includes a body, by whatever name called, to which the management of the affairs of a registered federation of labour unions or a registered labour union are entrusted, and includes the chairman, secretary and the treasurer of any such federation or registered labour union;

   "federation" means a registered federation of labour unions;

   "financial year" means a period of 12 months ending on the 31st"> day of December;

   "functions" include powers and duties;

   "Industrial Court" means the Industrial Court established by the Labour Disputes (Arbitration and Settlement) Act, 2006;

   "injury" includes any actionable wrong and any injury to a person in respect of his or her business, occupation, employment or other source of income;

   "intimidate" means causing, in the mind of a reasonable person, apprehension of injury to him or her, to any member of his or her family, including his or her dependants, or reasonable apprehension of violence or damage to his or her person or property;

   "Labour Advisory Board" means the Labour Advisory Board established by the Employment Act, 2006;

   "labour dispute" means any dispute or difference between an employer or employers and employees, or between employees and employees, connected with the employment or nonemployment, or the terms of the employment, or with the conditions of labour, of any person, or with the economic and social interests of workers;

   "labour union" means any organisation of employees created by employees for the purpose of representing the rights and interests of employees and includes a registered labour union in existence at the commencement of this Act;

   "lock-out" means the closing of a place of employment, or the suspension of work, or the refusal by an employer to continue to employ or to re-engage any number of persons employed by him or her as a result of a dispute with the aim of compelling those persons or if aiding another employer in compelling a person or person employed by him or her to accept terms or conditions of or affecting employment;

   "Minister" means the Minister responsible for labour matters;

   "minor" means any person aged 18 to 20 years;

   "National Organisation of Trade Unions" means the National Organisation of Trade Unions (established by the Trade Unions (Amendment) Decree, 1973), and functioning immediately before the commencement of this Act;

   "officer" when used with reference to a registered organisation or an organisation which seeks to become registered, includes any member of the executive committee of the organisation, but does not include a trustee or an auditor;

   "prescribed" means prescribed by regulations made under section 58;

   "property" means any moveable or immovable property;

   "public trustee" means the public trustee appointed by the Public Trustee Act;

   "register" means the register of labour unions kept by the Registrar under section 14;

   "registered" means registered under section 18;

   "registered office" means the office of an organisation which is registered under section 39, as the head office of that organisation;

   "registered organisation" means a federation of labour unions as the Registrar may certify in the Gazette; or a labour union which is registered under this Act;

   "registered postal address" means the address of an organisation registered under section 39;

   "Registrar" means a person appointed by the Minister under section 13 to act as Registrar of Labour Unions and includes any person appointed to be or to act as an assistant Registrar of Labour Unions;

   "Secretary General" means the Secretary General of a labour union;

   "strike" means the 'go slow' and 'a sit down' by a body of persons employed and acting in combination, or a concerted refusal or a refusal under a common understanding, of any number of persons employed to continue to work for an employer in consequence of a dispute, done as a means of compelling the employer, or to aid other employees, to accept or not to accept terms or conditions affecting the employment.

PART II
GENERAL PRINCIPLES OF FREEDOM OF ASSOCIATION.

3.   Right of employees to organise.

   Employees shall have the right to organise themselves in any labour union and may—

   (a)   assist in the running of the labour union;

   (b)   bargain collectively through a representative of their own choosing;

   (c)   engage in other lawful activities for the purposes of collective bargaining or any other mutual aid practice; and

   (d)   withdraw their labour and take industrial action.

4.   Employer not to interfere with right of association.

   An employer shall not—

   (a)   interfere with, restrain or coerce an employee in the exercise of his or her rights guaranteed under this Act;

   (b)   interfere with the formation of a labour union or with the administration of a registered organisation;

   (c)   discriminate in regard to the hire, tenure or any terms or conditions of employment in order to discourage membership in a labour union;

   (d)   discharge an employee on account of his or her lawful involvement or proposed lawful involvement in the activities of a labour union, including his or her participation in industrial action arising in connection with a labour dispute and not in contravention of the Labour Disputes (Arbitration and Settlement) Act, 2006; and

   (e)   prevent or otherwise hinder a labour union official from having access to his or her employee or employees' representatives or otherwise omit to accord any labour union official facilities to enable him or her to discharge their responsibilities promptly and efficiently.

5.   Offence on contravention of section 4.

   An employer who contravenes section 4 commits an offence and—

   (a)   is liable, on conviction, to a fine not exceeding 96 currency points or imprisonment for a term not exceeding four years, or to both; and

   (b)   in case of a continuous offence, is liable, on conviction, to a fine of two currency points for every day or part of a day during which the offence continues.

6.   Labour union or employee may bring action.

   (1) Where an employee or labour union is satisfied that an employer has contravened section 5, the employee or the labour union, as the case may be, may bring an action to the Industrial Court.

   (2) The Industrial Court shall, if it is satisfied, that the contravention has occurred, order appropriate relief for the complaining party, including, but not limited to the reinstatement of any employee who has been dismissed.

7.   Registrar's powers to investigate violation of section 5.

   (1) For the purpose of ensuring compliance with sections 3 and 4, the Registrar may investigate the conduct of any employer in relation to any of the matters set out in sections 3 or 4 and may call on the employer to produce, for the Registrar's inspection, all or any of the books or documents of the employer, or to provide in writing any information or explanation which the Registrar may require.

   (2) It is an offence for any employer to hinder or obstruct the Registrar in the course of his or her making investigations under subsection (1) or to fail or omit to produce any of the books or documents of the employer, or to fail or omit to furnish any information or explanation which the Registrar may require.

   (3) An employee who believes that his or her rights under sections 3 or 4 have been infringed by an action taken by his or her employer or prospective employer shall have a right of action to the Industrial Court for an appropriate order.

8.   Restraint of trade clauses.

   The functions of a labour union or a federation of labour unions so far as they relate to the regulation of relations between employees and employers, or between employees and an employers' organisation, or between employees shall not, by reason only that they are in restraint of trade, be unlawful so as—

   (a)   to render the labour union or a federation of labour unions or any of its members liable to criminal proceedings;

   (b)   to render the labour union or a federation of labour union or any of its members liable in tort;

   (c)   to make any agreement or trust void or voidable;

   (d)   to render any rule of a labour union or federation of labour unions unlawful or unenforceable.

9.   Registered federations of labour unions.

   (1) A registered labour union may affiliate to a registered federation of labour unions.

   (2) A federation of labour unions may be established for any lawful purpose including the following—

   (a)   to formulate policy relating to the proper management of labour unions and the general welfare of employees;

   (b)   to co-ordinate and supervise the activities of the federation in order to ensure that undertakings entered into by individual unions or by a federation of labour unions on behalf of its affiliated labour unions are duly honoured;

   (c)   to plan for and administer, in collaboration with other interested bodi

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