Deduction of employees’ salary as punishment illegal – Legal Consultant

Employers have been asked to desist from deducting salaries of their staff as a form of punishment because the practice is illegal.

A private legal consultant and Honorary Fellow of the Institute of Human Resource Management Practitioners (IHRMP), Ghana, Mr. Alexander Williams said the practice is contrary to the provisions of the Labour Act, 2003 (Act 651).

He referred to deductions prohibited under the Labour Act, 2003 (651) quoting the obligatory provision of Section 69 (2) as follows:

“An employer shall not (a) impose a pecuniary penalty upon a worker for any cause whatsoever; or (b) deduct from remuneration due to a worker, any amount whatsoever,”

He further advised that even for the sanction of demotions, you do not touch the worker’s salary. Questioned further what then to do, he urged employers and HR Managers to find other forms of punishment as stated in the organization’s Conditions of Service.

Mr. Alexander Williams made this call when facilitating a two-day training programme organized by the Institute of Human Resource Management Practitioners (IHRMP), Ghana in Accra with the theme, The HR Professional and Legal Compliance – the 4Cs in Human Resource Legal Relations.

Photo:Mr. Williams seated (4th from right) in a group photograph with the participants

The two-day training programme was highly patronised by practitioners and some trade unions from sectors including mining, banking, hospitality, hospitals, universities, and some private and public service institutions.


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