JOHANNESBURG, Jan. 1 (Xinhua) -- South African trade federation, the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU), on Wednesday welcomed the implementation of paid parental leave which comes into effect on January 1.
COSATU's parliament coordinator Matthews Park said workers have spent years fighting for this new law.
"This is a historic and long-fought for victory for workers, parents, children, and families across South Africa," he said.
This new paid parental leave means fathers would be entitled to 10 days of paid leave when their children are born. Mothers already benefit from maternity leave. Employers are expected to pay parents their income while on leave.
It also means children born through surrogacy would benefit from the law. "This is now an Act of Parliament, assented by the President and promulgated. It is not a matter of negotiations but it is a law," he said.
The new law was signed by President Cyril Ramaphosa in October.
Parks said unions should communicate with their members to ensure they are aware of the new law.
"COSATU is pleased that its efforts and workers' hard-fought struggles have borne fruit with this achievement," he said. "Unions are called upon to ensure that all workers are aware of their rights and able to exercise them freely."