Interventions to improve governance at SOEs

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Deputy President David Mabuza says government is implementing interventions to ensure that governance is improved at state-owned enterprises (SOEs) in the short-term.

The Deputy President also said that work was also underway to stamp out corruption at SOEs as they should be playing a developmental role in the economy.

He said this when he made his maiden appearance at the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) to respond to oral questions on Wednesday.

“We are working hard to change the governance landscape by implementing several initiatives in the short to medium term. This would bring the required stability that we are all yearning for in our SOEs,” he said.

The Deputy President said in the short-term, under the leadership of the Inter-Ministerial Committee of the SOEs, government has capacitated the Board of the South African Airways and has also fast-tracked the appointment of the CEO as well as proceeded with the implementing of the turn-around strategy.

“We have done the same with Eskom and we have set clear targets and parameters to plan better with the build programme to prevent future black-outs.

“For a longer-term outlook, we will focus on the implementation of the recommendations of the Presidential Review on SOEs,” he said.

The Deputy President said the Inter-Ministerial Committee on SOEs has made considerable progress in reviewing government’s shareholder policy, which is currently undergoing stakeholder consultation to enable the drafting of an efficient legislation.

He also said Cabinet has endorsed the private sector participation framework for infrastructure delivery, which is being led by the National Treasury.

Cabinet has also approved the guide on the remuneration and incentives standards for non-executive directors, executive directors and prescribed officers for SOEs.

The Deputy President also said Cabinet has also established a national guide for the appointment of persons to Boards of all state-controlled institutions which will also regulate even the appointment of CEOs.

Government intensifies fight against corruption

Meanwhile, the Deputy President also said that government was intensifying its fight against corruption.

“For our part as government, we are putting in place mechanisms to detect and fight all shapes and forms of corruption.

“We note that corruption is a cancer that that we must not allow to grow. We want to … uproot corruption from our ranks, be it in a form of a traffic officer on the road or a [front-line service staff] at Home Affairs. We have decided not to talk about corruption. We have decided not to complain about corruption. We have decided to act to [turn] the tide.”

Public service key to economy

The Deputy President said, meanwhile, that as a developmental state, the transformative agenda of government and the economy requires public service cadres that are caring, skilled, professional responsive and committed.

Institutions like the Public Service Commission play a crucial role in cases of compliance, accountability and transparency.

Financial disclosures are one of the means to promote clean governance and transparency, the Deputy President said. –