05 September 2019 - NW470
Joseph, Mr D to ask the Minister in The Presidency
(1) What were the main reasons behind the recent reconfiguration of government departments; (2) whether the reconfiguration of government departments will result in the implementation of any cost-containment measures; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, (a) from which financial year will the savings of the cost-containment measures be calculated and (b) what is the predicted resultant savings for the Government in each case? NWJ462E
(1) The President pronounced in his State of the Nation Address on 16 February 2018 that "Growth, development and transformation depend on a strong and capable state. It is critical that the structure and size of the state is optimally suited to meet the needs of the people and ensure the most efficient allocation of public resources. We will therefore initiate a process to review the configuration, number and size of national government departments."
The Presidency is leading the 2019 National Macro Organisation of Government (NMOG), which must be finalised by 31 March 2020 with the assistance of centre of government and affected departments.
These changes are necessary for the following reasons.
a) The National Development Plan articulates the vision of a developmental state that requires building state capacity as an important step to achieve a developmental state.
b) The clustering of homogeneous or related functions to ensure that functional areas of responsibility are clearly demarcated to avoid ambiguity, overlapping
or duplication of functions.
c) To promote synergy within ministerial portfolios and institutions which will be responsible for broad policy outcomes to realize value for citizens.
d) To promote accountability for delivery of outcomes.
e) Promote coherence, better coordination and optimizing the use of resources for efficient and effective administration.
f) Government remains committed to ensure minimal disruptions to service delivery within the public service.
(2) The NMOG is focussed on the reorganisation of specific functions within the current budget baselines of departments. There is a reallocation of particular functions and concomitant resources (budgets and staff) between departments and no government function has been abolished so as to realise cost savings in that regard.
(a) Affected departments are concluding on their start-up organisational structures to determine the required posts. Affected employees will transfer between departments during the latter half of 2019 followed by the matching and placing of staff, which will be determined by a collective agreement with organised Labour. Any excess staff will be redeployed and reskilled to functional areas where there are shortages of staff.
Cost-containment measures or possible savings will only be realised after the NMOG process through improved service delivery models, collaboration and coordination of outcomes of departments.
(b) Cost-containment measures or savings will be calculated post the 2019 NMOG process as part of budget allocations through the 2020 -2023 MTEF period.
(c) The amount of possible savings can be known the finalisation of the 2020 -2023 MTEF budget cycle.
DRAFTER OF THE REPLY
Director-General and Secretary of the Cabinet: In The Presidency
Recommended/ Not recommended
Hon. Thembi Siweya, MP
Deputy Minister in The Presidency
Hon. Jackson Mthembu, MP
Minister in the Presidency