Media release

Governance and Administration Ministerial Cluster media briefing

20 February 2012

20 February 2012

Chairperson: Minister of Home Affairs, Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, MP

Deputy Chairperson: Minister of Public Service and Administration, Mr Radhakrishna Padayachie, MP

January 2012 saw the nation commemorating the centenary of the oldest liberation movement on this continent, our governing party. We are presented with a unique opportunity to accelerate the transformation and protection of our national heritage.This comes within the context of honouring the sacrifices our people made in the struggle for democratic elections which laid the foundation for us to work towards building a non-racial and non-sexist society.

A series of monuments and memorials that celebrate our heroes and heroines who led the liberation struggle will be unveiled. This will include the declaration and protection of the Wesleyan Church Hall in Waaihoek, Mangaung as well as the Gugulethu Seven Monument. Work on the sites of the Pondo Revolt on Inquza Hill and the Holy Cross Church, that of the 1913 revolt by African women in the Free State and the 1957 anti-pass revolt by women in Zeerust will also be undertaken.The Bhambatha monument will be completed and unveiled in Greytown, while the Matola Raid Monument and Interpretative Centre are under construction and will be completed in July 2012.

The homes of Dr JL Dube, Maphikela, Mahabane, Lillian Ngoyi, OR Tambo in Nkantolo, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela in Brandfort, Dr. Moroka in Thaba Nchu and Bram Fisher in Westdene will be restored.The graves of Robert Sobukwe, Dr. Moroka, Oliver Tambo, Dr. Xuma, Sefako Makgatho, Pixley Ka Isaka Seme, Rahima Moosa, Steven Bantubonke Biko, Josiah Tshangana Gumede, Walter and Albertina Sisulu will be upgraded and declared as heritage sites.

To further heighten awareness of our struggle, the Steve Biko Centre is also under construction and near completion.The second phase of the Ncome museum, the museum at Freedom Park and the seven epochs exhibition will be completed.To further evoke a spirit of nation-building and reconciliation we will declare the Voortrekker Monument as a national heritage site in March 2012 while preparations are underway for the centenary commemoration of the Voortrekker/Msunduzi Museum.

Ladies and gentlemen,

The Governance and Administration cluster aims to create an enabling environment for clean and effective governance that leads to economic growth, infrastructure development and a better quality of life for our citizens. Our work is aligned to Outcomes 9 and 12 (a) and (b): A Responsive, Accountable, Effective and Efficient Local Government System; An Efficient, Effective and Development Oriented Public Service; and An Empowered, Fair and Inclusive Citizenship respectively.

We must ensure good governance and financial discipline in all our institutions in line with the recent findings and recommendations of the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM). We are encouraged by the appointment of the former Deputy President Baleka Mbete to serve on the African Peer Review Panel of Eminent Persons.

For proper planning and service delivery, we need to know, amongst others, the size of our population.Official statistics plays a critical role in evidence-based decision making. Accordingly, Statistics South Africa (StatsSA) conducted the national population and housing census from 10-31 October 2011 during which more than 14 million households were visited. A date for the release of Census 2011 results will be announced.

We also need to know on an ongoing basis how many babies are born so we can plan to meet the needs of our people.This will tell us how many vaccines we need, how many children will be going to school in six years, how many will require tertiary education, how many young adults will require housing, and so on.

While statistics are a credible tool of governance, the Quarterly Labour Force Survey (QLFS) has attracted attention from some members of the media.We are however confident that the methodologies used for the collection of labour statistics are sound and following international best practice.

A responsive, accountable, effective and efficient local government system

In the next financial year there will be the accelerated implementation of the Local Government Turn Around Strategy with a view to building a Responsive, Accountable Efficient and Efficient local government system, capable of deliveringbasic services to all the citizenry. In this regard, we have prioritised infrastructure development that will improve service delivery of water, sanitation, electricity and waste removal while the Siyenza Manje project in partnership with the Development Bank of Southern Africa has identified 100 municipalities across the country for immediate support.

Working together with SALGA, the provinces and municipalities, we will provide support, monitor and evaluate theimplementation of the Municipal Systems Amendment Act (MSAA) which came into effect in July 2011.As part of streamlining and improving the management of properties and revenue collection in municipalities, the Amendment of the Municipal Property Rates Act will be brought before Parliament.This aims to ensure a simplified, transparent, uniform and user-friendly property rating to guide municipalities.

A national assessment of the state of institutions of traditional leadership has been conducted and completed.The findings indicate the need to improve governance, transparency and accountability within the institution to enable it to play its role in amongst others, economic development.

An efficient, effective and development orientated public service

Capacity building is a key focus area to ensure an efficient, effective and development-orientated public service. This includes an induction programme for newly appointed public servants, the training of unemployed youth graduates, building capacity for public service innovation, and repositioning the Public Administration Leadership and Management Academy (PALAMA) as a School of Government.

We are pleased that PALAMA has, in partnership with the National Youth Development Agency, trained a total of 2 443 unemployed youth graduates to prepare them for public service employment opportunities.A further 18 660 new public servants last year participated in the Junior and Middle Management induction programme with 17 575 public servants undergoing the same in current financial year.

We have also introduced a graduate financial internship programme in all municipalities to address financial management gaps within the public service.We expect that most of the 1 300 graduates on the programme will be absorbed permanently into these municipalities upon conclusion of the training.

The Department of Home Affairs has, towards ensuring officials are fully trained in civic and immigration management, introduced a unique qualification approved by the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA). The first group of officials participating in this programme began their practical and theoretical training in January.

Our Integrated Financial Management System will further integrate and modernise information technology systems that currently support financial, supply chain and human resource management in the public service. This is part of a public service wide migration to an e-government with three components - the provision of services from government to government; from government to business and from government to citizens. A pilot project has been implemented in the Free State with plans to increase the rollout.

Government is committed to clean governance to ensure public money is well spent while improving our investment climate. We have therefore taken firm steps towards the establishment of anti-corruption instruments such as the government wide anti-corruption units, the Multi-Agency Working Group and the Anti-corruption Hotline.Since the inception of the National Anti-Corruption Hotline, 1 499 officials have been charged with misconduct for corrupt activities - 685 provincially and 814 nationally.Thorough investigation of alleged incidents of corruption has resulted in the recovery of R110 million from perpetrators by various departments.

We have increased our strategic focus, improved interdepartmental and intergovernmental coordination, and introduced more rigour into our planning, monitoring and evaluation processes.We have completed the first year of quarterly reporting to Cabinet enabling the monitoring of implementation of the delivery agreements and expeditious interventions where required.

Government has also implemented a joint programme of frontline service delivery monitoring. This involves, amongst others, unannounced monitoring visits to selected service delivery sites, such as Home Affairs Offices, South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) offices, police stations, health facilities, drivers license centres, and in some provinces schools and courts. Since June 2011, 120 monitoring visits have been undertaken in five provinces and improvement plans are being developed for these facilities.

Although data continues to be analysed and feedback provided to relevant departments so interventions can be undertaken, common problems include: an absence of internal directional signage; extended waiting times; absence of active queue management as well as the deployment of inappropriately trained security guards as queue managers; the under-utilisation of complaints and compliments systems; a general absence of managers at front-line service facilities as well as wide-spread neglect of basic maintenance and facilities management.

Together with the offices of the Premiers, we are also assessing the state of management practices at national and provincial departments using the Management Performance Assessment Tool (MPAT).To date 13 national departments and 19 provincial departments in Mpumalanga and Limpopo have completed these self assessments and are implementing improvement plans to address identified areas of weakness.

In addition, a national evaluation system, aimed at improving the effectiveness, efficiency, sustainability and impact of government programmes has been developed. Initial evaluations have begun in the Early Childhood Development (ECD) sector. We will soon move to human settlements, child and maternal health, as well as the Comprehensive Rural Development Programme.

An empowered, fair and inclusive citizenship

Citizens must be aware of their rights and responsibilities so they are empowered to participate in government’s programmes and services.We will ensure public servants observe the Batho Pele ethos of being service orientated, committed to continuous service delivery improvement while striving for excellence in service delivery.

Government is committed to empowering citizens with access to services.We have noted vast improvements in the turnaround of services delivery in various departments. The secure and efficient provision of identity documents (IDs) and therefore safeguarding of identity, has been greatly improved through new processes - an SMS service and the online verification of fingerprints, the result of an agreement between the Department of Home Affairs and the South African Banking Risk Information Centre.

Our National Population Registration campaign encourages the registration of babies within 30 days of delivery and all 16 year olds to apply for IDs.The campaign is implemented together with members of the 254 local stakeholder forums throughout the country.

With a view to accelerating efforts to increase our rural footprint to ensure easy access to services. In this regard, and amongst others, immigration and civic services are now rendered at 293 offices in rural areas and 114 offices in urban areas while the Thusong Service Centre programme has resulted in 171 centres across the country. By bringing integrated government information and services within close proximity of most communities, we were able to servejust over 5 million people by the end of December 2011.

We also strive to increase citizen participation in our national life through access to information.In this regard, the gazetting of the South African Languages Bill is a landmark event, serving to regulate and monitor the use of official languages within government, national public entities and public enterprises. The legislation will enforce the promotion of multilingualism so that citizens can access information and assistance in the languages of their choice. It recommends the use of three official languages for use, two of which must be indigenous languages of historically diminished use and status.

Under the Community Library Conditional Grant, R1.6 billion has been earmarked for a major revolution of library services, and to promote a culture of reading and writing, over the next three years. About 700 library staff are maintained on the grant while, 170 libraries have been upgraded and 20 new ones built since 2007. This year, 14 new libraries will be built and 15 upgraded. The first batch of publications under the Indigenous Languages Publishing Programme will be launched in March 2012.

The Centre for Public Service and Innovation has with the South African National Council for the Blind and the Department of Basic Education, piloted a project to test appropriate assistive devices for visually impaired teachers, increasing their independence and efficiency in the classroom.

Our new Mzansi’s Golden Economy (MGE) Strategy, aimed at boosting and enhancing the arts, culture and heritage sectors while creating sustainable jobs is being implemented.Through this, the National Cultural Industries Skills Academy is being developed in a phased manner while the Public Art programme will create Creative Industries business incubators, new enterprises, support existing ones, createtemporary jobs and transfer skills.

We will also in the year ahead see sustained support for theatre productions that will criss-cross the country, while ensuring that artists in these productions are employed throughout the year. In addition, a series of national events have been identified to help create public awareness of the arts.

In pursuit of nurturing social cohesion and nation building within and amongst communities, the National Social Cohesion Strategy will be presented and finalised at a summit to be held in July 2012. We will continue to: educate communities on their rights, empowering them to claim these rights. The Bureau of Heraldry is further embarking on an extensive “National Symbol campaign” using public Radio and community radio stations to popularize our national symbols.

In the area of sport and recreation, the need to bring all schools and sport into one system is paramount.We are therefore prioritising the repositioning of school sport, not only as the talent discovery platform, but also to consciously foster a well stratified, co-ordinated and integrated school sport construction. Efforts to bring youth of all races together at school level, have resulted in a school sport programme that will be rolled out through a structured league system.

The Sport and Recreation Indaba held on 20 and 21 November 2011 gave birth to the first-ever Sport and Recreation Plan that will, going forward, guide the sport and recreation sector in South Africa.Working together with government and other agencies, we are committed to doing all we can to ensure a solid foundation for future international events while ensuring the proper development of our athletes from various codes, towards better representative and performing national sport teams.We will also work together towards supporting a multi-coded Team South Africa, including Banyana Banyana, that will leave our shores to raise our flag at the 2012 London Olympics.

These are come highlights of the work of various Departments within the Cluster. We will now be able to take your questions which we will field as a panel.

I thank you.

Penny Ntuli
Chief Director: Governance and Administration Cluster Communication
Cell: 076 794 9120

Statement by Governance and Administration Cluster

Issued by: Department of Home Affairs

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