Setas to get makeover

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Pretoria - Higher Education and Training Minister Blade Nzimande and Sectoral Education and Training Authorities (Setas) have agreed to pursue plans to transform the Seta landscape.

The agreement, which was reached at a meeting in Johannesburg on Monday, indicated that there was an urgent need to develop an adequate skills base that seeks to promote economic growth and development in South Africa.

This comes after the Labour Court ruled that the Nzimande had exceeded his powers in terms of the Skills Development Act by radically changing the constitution that dictates who controls the Services Seta. The new constitution is supposed to govern all the other 20 Setas.

But in their declaration, the department and Seta, said: "The forum fully endorses the minister's new vision. We reiterate that we will co-operate with the minister and continue to engage him on all transformation matters, including the proposed changes to the Seta landscape."

The forum according to its chairperson, Joel Dikgole said they "fully support the minister's transformation processes. We are fully aware that the Seta sector needs urgent transformation to cope with critical shortages of skills and resource training of our people."

Dikgole re-iterated their support for the appointment of independent chairpersons as proposed by Nzimande.

Furthermore, the Seta Forum unreservedly welcomed the opportunity to engage with the department on matters of skills development, and categorically distanced itself from the ongoing case at the Labour Court between the Department and the Services Seta.

For his part, Nzimande rejected the misconstrued notion that only one Seta is performing optimally. He indicated that while there is need for improvement on the work that the Setas are doing, there is a lot of good work that is happening in many Setas.

"All the Setas are performing well in this country and we must not accept the misleading reports that there is a super Seta," added Nzimande.