The Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) has launched a zero-rated mobile app, as well as a free USSD platform to allow users to access UIF services at any time.
It hopes this will help reduce long queues at labour centres.
The app, which was launched on Monday, will allow UIF clients to access services at any time, from anywhere at no cost.
Unveiling the platforms during a media briefing in Cape Town, UIF commissioner Teboho Maruping said the USSD service and mobile app will promote greater self-service, reduce long queues in labour centres and alleviate pressure on officials.
Maruping said the platforms will put more money in people’s pockets because they will save on transport costs currently incurred when visiting labour centres.
“There is really no better time than now to do this to ensure that workers begin to access services at their fingertips. We are moving with the times to create a better, more capable UIF that leverages technology to respond to challenges on the ground and changes in the external environment,” Maruping said.
He said the UIF recognises that most of its clients are not in the best financial position when they need to access their services, hence the initiative to launch the zero-rated mobile app and USSD platform.
What the UIF app does
Maruping said the two platforms also allow clients to check their UIF registration status, which will improve non-compliance with the Unemployment Insurance Act by employers who fail to register, declare and pay contributions for their workers.
“By simply dialling *134*843# on any cellular phone for free, clients can, among others, submit a continuation of payment or check their claim and payment status, instead of visiting a labour centre. The same services can also be accessed on our mobile app, which can be downloaded from either the Google Play store, Apple’s App Store or Huawei’s AppGallery,” Maruping explained.
The commissioner also called on all UIF-contributing workers to use these platforms to check their registration status, while in employment, and not wait until they are no longer working.
“If you find that your employer has not registered you, but is deducting UIF, then immediately report this to a labour inspector so it can be corrected,” Maruping said.
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