Reorganisation of govt will streamline service delivery

Thursday, June 27, 2019

Cabinet has confirmed that the reconfiguration of government will result in improved service delivery, says Minister in the Presidency Jackson Mthembu.

“Cabinet confirms that the macro reorganisation of government will streamline and improve service delivery to our people through a seamless, cost-effective and efficient government that is more responsive to the needs of South Africans,” said Mthembu at a post-Cabinet media briefing in Pretoria.

President Cyril Ramaphosa in May announced a reconfigured Cabinet with the number of Ministers reduced to 28, down from 36 in the previous administration.

For the first time in the history of South Africa, half of all Ministers are women. There is also a significant number of young people.

At the time of the announcement, the President committed to a process of further reforms to “promote coherence, better coordination and improved efficiency” of government. 

As part of these measures, the President has commenced with the process to conclude performance agreements with Ministers and Deputy Ministers.

To strengthen accountability, President Ramaphosa directed that the areas of responsibility of all Deputy Ministers must be clearly delineated. In departments with two Deputy Ministers, the Ministers will be responsible for the overall functioning of the Ministry and Department.

The President has further announced the reconfiguration of old departments or the establishment of new departments to align them with the Ministries. Some departments remain mainly unchanged, but require changes to nomenclature to conform to Ministerial portfolio designations.

The total number of departments has been reduced by five, stemming from mergers and the transfer of functions. 

“South Africans have given this sixth administration a clear mandate to accelerate inclusive economic growth, act with greater urgency to tackle poverty, improve government services, fight corruption and end state capture,” said Mthembu.

On the State of the Nation Address delivered last week, the Minister said the speech had inspired and galvanised all South Africans to work towards a shared prosperous future.

“SONA 2019 charts the course for the implementation of the electoral mandate received by the governing party from our people.

“This sets out how working together, we will improve the lives of South Africans and grow the economy for our country, by addressing the persistent realities of unemployment, poverty and inequality. President Ramaphosa’s call for a new social compact requires the contribution of all South Africans working together to overcome our challenges and place the country on a path of greater growth,” said Mthembu.

This will include expanding the industrial sector, strengthening the mining industry, supporting the agricultural sector, improving the skills base of the youth and making it easier for tourists to visit the country.

The Minister said as South Africans, “we must continue to encourage and support local industries and buy local products”.

Cabinet has also called on all social partners, business, labour, civil society and political formations, to reinforce their collaborative efforts in making the country a better place for all and take shared responsibility for accelerating the country’s growth trajectory.

Government, for its part, said Mthembu, will redouble and triple endeavors as directed by the President to remove an impediments to the growth of the economy and build the capacity of state organs to deliver to the people.

Ministers will table their Budget Vote statements in July, in which practical plans will further be unveiled in order to realise the vision that the President has put before the nation.