16 referred to courts over safety standard violations in Oman

Energy Tuesday 17/January/2017 12:49 PM
By: Times News Service
16 referred to courts over safety standard violations in Oman

Muscat: Representatives of 16 companies were referred to the courts in Oman for violating health and safety standards for workers in 2016, the Ministry of Manpower has said.
In a tweet on its official twitter handle, the ministry said 1,328 field visits were carried out in 2016 to check violations and catch the violators.
“We slapped fines and the courts even handed out jail terms to some people,” the ministry’s tweet added.
Article (87) of the Oman Labour Law makes it obligatory upon every employer to take necessary precautions to protect workers against health hazards and dangers posed, either on account of the nature of work or the machinery employed. The employers, adds the provision, shall endeavour to provide whatever is necessary to ensure safety and health of workers at the workplaces.
The article also adds that the employer should ensure that the places of work are always clean and safe and the conditions related to comfort and safety are fulfilled. It also mandates that while occupational health risks should be kept in mind, the machinery, equipment and tools must be installed and maintained in such a way as to ensure safety.
Mohammed Farji, a trade unionist, said the Ministry of Manpower should increase the number of inspection visits, especially in the interior areas.
“Some of the employers are least bothered about the health and safety standards for their workers. While in some cases, the employers themselves violate these, there are also cases where the employees are reluctant to adopt safety measures. More awareness programmes should be carried out for employers and employees regarding the need to have health and safety standards, especially in the interior areas,” the trade unionist added.
“We know that in some cases, employers deduct a certain amount from employees’ salary for providing safety gear for the workers. As a result, workers avoid such a cut on salary and end up taking risks,” the trade unionist added.
The labour law, however, makes it clear that the employer shall not charge the workers or deduct any amount from their wages for providing such protection.