No retrenchments, says government

Monday, August 13, 2018

Public Service and Administration Minister Ayanda Dlodlo on Monday refuted media reports that government plans to retrench 30 000 public servants to cut costs.

Dlodlo said the media report is a complete misrepresentation of government’s programme.

“It’s intended objective is to create unnecessary and dangerous panic not only in the public service but the entire country and it must be rejected with the contempt it deserves,” she said on Monday.

The Mail & Guardian on Friday reported that the process to retrench public servants would take place over three years and could save government up to R20 billion.

Speaking at the Rahima Moosa Mother and Child hospital in Johannesburg, Dlodlo said the reality is that the President’s call to restructure government in order to enhance service delivery and make the public service more effective and efficient by removing superfluous functions and structures does not include an option of retrenchment as reported in the paper.

“The report is a complete misrepresentation of the government’s programme in relation to the macro organization of the state and the initiatives proposed to manage the public sector wage bill,” the Minister said.

Dlodlo said there has been no evidence that suggests that the public service is over staffed.

The Minister acknowledged that there has been plans to restructure the public service.

"I assure public servants that government does not have a plan to retrench public servants en masse as alleged by the Mail & Guardian newspaper.

“If people leave the public service, it will not be because of retrenchment, but it will be because of packages offered to them with no penalties,” Dlodlo said.

Dlodo said as government, they have been looking at decreasing the numbers but did not reach the conclusion of retrenching people.

She explained that government has been looking at ways of relieving the older generation to make way for the younger generation.

“I will not take decisions without my partners,” Dlodlo said, adding that there is shortage of skills in the public service.

Dlodlo said government is looking at other options such as reskilling.

Nurses recommit to their pledge

Meanwhile, the Minister, accompanied by Gauteng Health MEC Gwen Ramokgopa, visited Rahima Moosa Hospital to witness nurses as they recommit their nurses pledge to service humanity in honour of the late nurse and struggle stalwart, Albertina Sisulu’s centenary.  

Dlodlo commended the nurses on the good work they are doing serving the lives of people and at times working under difficult conditions.

“Such dedication contributes immensely to the rich legacy of our stalwarts and forebears in the nursing profession such as Mme Charlotte Maxeke, Mme Cecilia Makhiwane and Mme Albertina Sisulu, among others.

“This kind of courage and commitment should inspire us to serve our people with humility, dignity, commitment and a sense of accountability,” Dlodlo said.

Held under the theme “100 years of Albertina Sisulu, Woman of Fortitude: Women united in moving South Africa Forward,” the event, formed part of the 2018 Women’s Month celebrations.

According to the Department of Public Service and Administration, the event aims to commemorate what would have been Ma Sisulu’s 100th birthday, and serves as a stark reminder of her lifetime service to the people through her career as a registered nurse and as a struggle activist, and seeks to encourage the nurses to emulate her and recommit themselves to serve with pride and dignity.

Nurses, as health professionals, provide one of the most essential services and are among the critical public servants with a vital role to play in the rendering of professional and sustained public services to the people of South Africa.

Situated in Coronation Hill, west of Johannesburg, Rahima Moosa Hospital is the only hospital in the country that renders services to only women and children and conducts an average of 1 000 infant deliveries a month. –