Civil servants wont lose their jobs - Zuma

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Pretoria - President Jacob Zuma on Sunday announced several changes to the structure of government and his executive.

However, he said civil servants will not lose their jobs as a result of the changes.

"Civil servants will not lose their jobs as a result of these changes. This is a matter of principle in terms of the country's labour relations dispensation.

"I however want to stress to our public servants that the era of hard work has begun. Public servants who do their work diligently and efficiently have nothing to worry about," he said at the Union Buildings on Sunday.

The new President reiterated however that laziness and incompetence will not be tolerated, while the emphasis will be on excellence and achievement from the Cabinet and the public service.

Delivering his inaugural speech on Saturday, Mr Zuma was clear that delivery by his administration would be a priority.

"We are now called upon to implement our Manifesto. The dreams and hopes of all the people of our country must be fulfilled. There is no place for complacency, no place for cynicism, no place for excuses.

"Everything we do must contribute in a direct and meaningful way to the improvement of the lives of our people," he said.

Speaking about the many changes to structure and faces in his administration, Mr Zuma said it was made very clear by the African National Congress that the party wanted "an efficient, caring and effective administration, which will be accessible and responsive to the needs of the people."

"With these objectives in mind, I am confident that the new structure of government will enable the state machinery to speed up service delivery," he said.

The most notable change in the new structure is the advent of the National Planning Commission (NPC).

The NPC will be responsible for strategic planning for the country to ensure one National Plan to which all spheres of government would adhere.

Other changes include, the Department of Minerals and Energy will be split into two separate departments of Mining and of Energy, each with a Minister.

The Department of Education will be split into separate Ministries, one for Basic Education and the other for Higher Education and Training.

The Department of Housing will be called the Department of Human Settlements to take on a more holistic focus.

Mr Zuma said there will be a new department of Rural Development and Land Affairs which are part of government's key priorities for the next five years.

The Department of Water affairs and Forestry becomes the Department of Water and Environmental Affairs.

A new Department of Economic Development has been established to focus on economic policymaking. The implementation functions will remain with the Department of Trade and Industry.

A new department of Tourism has been created.

Agriculture becomes Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry.

The Department of Provincial and Local Government becomes Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs.

A new Ministry has been created for Women, Youth, Children and People with Disability, to emphasise the need for equity and access to development opportunities for the vulnerable groups in society.

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