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PUBLIC SERVICE AND ADMINISTRATION PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE
15 November 2006
PUBLIC SERVICE AMENDMENT BILL: DEPARTMENT BRIEFING
Chairperson: Mr R Baloyi (ANC)
Documents handed out:
Public Service Amendment Bill [B31-2006]
Suggested Amendments: Part1, Part2, Part3, Part4 & Part5
The Committee was briefed on the Public Service Amendment Bill by the Department of Public Service and Administration after the Minister had made introductory remarks.
The briefing could not be finished due to time constraints and the Department would continue the briefing at a future date. Members’ concerns included setting specific timeframes for the Committee to finish the Public Service Amendment Bill before May/June 2007.
Opening remarks by the Minister of Public Service and Administration
Minister Geraldine Fraser-Moleketi informed the Committee that South Africa would be hosting the Global Forum on Anti Corruption. She extended an invitation to Members to be part of the African Forum that would be held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
The Minister said that the public service should be guided by democratic principles enshrined in the Constitution. The role of the human resources component was to maximise the human potential of public service personnel. She suggested that the Committee should review the current situation by looking at human resources audits. Members should have the necessary clout to engage the human resources issues. She informed the Committee that she would be consulting all the labour federations before 18 December 2006.
The Chairperson said that the annual reports of state Department focussed on financial matters rather than service delivery. The Committee would discuss such issues in the upcoming strategic plan workshop.
Mr M Matsomela (ANC) enquired about the timeframes that were set for the establishment of a single public service.
The Chairperson replied that the original date was May/June 2007 and the Committee should finalise the Public Service Amendment Bill long before then.
Ms L Maloney (ANC) said that Members should prepare for the Single Public Service Bill, because the Public Service Amendment Bill was just an interim measure.
Department of Public Service and Administration (DPSA) briefing
Ms Van Schoor (Legal Services, DPSA) said that Section 2 of the principal Act would be amended to capture the new definition of educators and members of essential services, except for members of the SA National Defence Force (SANDF) because they have their own collective bargaining structure that falls outside the Labour Relations Amendment Act, 2000. She said that Clause 8(a), dealing with compliance, had always been problematic but the Bill would give the executive authority the power to deal with such problems. The Minister would be empowered to take the appropriate steps in cases of non-compliance with the Act.
Mr A Malaudzi, DPSA Legal Services, went through the Bill clause by clause. Section 7 dealt with the powers of agencies; Section 8 dealt with the composition of the Public Service; Section 9 dealt with appointments of personnel in the public service; Section 10 dealt with qualifications; Section 11 dealt with appointments and the filing of posts; Section 12 dealt with the appointment of heads of departments and career incidents; Section 13 dealt with the appointment or transfer on probation and Section 14 dealt with transfer within the public service. Mr Malaudzi said that the Act did not cater for consulting the employee before transfer. The Bill would deal with that and conditions of employment would remain the same even if a person were transferred to a lower post. Section 15 dealt with transfer and secondment from and to the public service. Section 16 (b) 1 allowed for the head of department to communicate with another head of department in case the disciplined person was working for another employer within the public service.
The Chairperson said that the Bill had 44 sections, but the Committee had only gone through about half in this meeting. The briefing would be continued at a future date.
The meeting was adjourned.
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