No discipline management system in SA’s public service

Issued by Dr Mimmy Gondwe MP – DA Shadow Deputy Minister for Public Service and Administration
25 Aug 2022 in News

Please find attached soundbite by Dr Mimmy Gondwe MP.

The DA reiterates our calls for the Department of Public Service and Administration (DPSA) to urgently develop and implement a discipline management strategy for the public service that will place a strong emphasis on addressing the implementation challenges relating to discipline management as well as the prevailing non-compliance culture within the public service.

This after the DPSA revealed at a meeting of the parliamentary portfolio committee on public service and administration, held yesterday morning, that there is no discipline management system being implemented in our country’s public service.

The DA requested that the Committee summon the acting Minister of Public Service and Administration, Thulas Nxesi, and the Minister in the Presidency, Mondli Gungubele, to account on the discipline management system in the public service and on the policy relating to the suspension of Director-Generals (DGs) and heads of departments (HoDs).

According to the DPSA, reports emanating from the Forum of South African Director-Generals on the implementation of discipline management by national and provincial departments, over the past two years, indicate that the implementation of the discipline management system “is neither effective nor efficient”. And this can be attributed to the increases in the backlog of misconduct cases and precautionary suspensions in both national and provincial departments.

Further, according to the DPSA although the overall total cost of precautionary suspensions within the public service has stabilised, it is currently standing at around R82 million for provincial departments and R25 million for national departments.

Although the DA takes the point that the management of disciplinary cases is the responsibility of individual DGs and HoDs, it is now very clear that they are failing to comply with or adhere to public service policies and prescripts in this regard.

It has also become apparent that there is no consequence management for DGs, HoDs and other officials that are responsible for the management of disciplinary cases in the public service.

What is also evident is that the DPSA is failing dismally to develop and implement an all-inclusive strategy that is aimed at not only eradicating the existing backlog of disciplinary cases in the public service but also at ensuring that disciplinary cases in the public service are consistently dealt with in an effective and efficient manner.