Daily Archives: August 2, 2018

Joint Constitutional Review Committee Continues Hearings in Swellendam

Parliament� A delegation of the Joint Constitutional Review Committee (CRC) will tomorrow (3 August) continue with public hearings in Swellendam in the Western Cape.

The joint committee was instructed by the National Assembly and the National Council of Provinces to ascertain whether a review of section 25 of the Constitution and other clauses is necessary, to make it possible for the state to expropriate land in the public interest without compensation, and to propose the necessary constitutional amendments where necessary. The committee has already held hearings in all the other provinces.

Source: Parliament of the Republic of South Africa

Home Affairs calls on qualifying naturalisation applicants to update contact details

The Department of Home Affairs calls on all foreign nationals who have applied for citizenship through naturalisation to approach offices where they lodged their applications to urgently update their contact details.

The Department is concluding its adjudication processes to be followed by induction and naturalisation ceremonies scheduled to take place in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng in August. The Department has noted that in some instances application processes take longer than expected, resulting in some of the applicants changing their contact details or even losing them. This has proven difficult for the Department to reach a number of the applicants.

Source: Government of South Africa

Minister Mildred Oliphant: Fourth BRICS Labour and Employment Ministers’ Meeting

Opening statement by the Minister of Labour Mildred Oliphant, on the occasion of the fourth BRICS Labour and Employment Ministers’ Meeting

MEC for Economic Development, Tourism & Environmental Affairs in KwaZulu-Natal Province: His Excellency; Mr Sihle Zikalala

Honourable Mayor of KwaDukuza; His Worship, Cllr Njabulo Ricardo Mthembu.

Director-General of the International Labour Organisation; Mr. Guy Ryder;

Minister of Labour of the Federal Republic of Brazil; His Excellency; Caio Luiz de Almeida Vieira.

Minister of Labour and Employment of the Republic of India, His Excellency; Shri Santosh Kumar Gangwar.

Minister of Human Resources and Social Security of the People’s Republic of China; His Excellency; Qiu Xiaoping;

Minister of Labour of the Kingdom of eSwatini, Her Excellency; Winnie Magagula;

Deputy Minister of Labour and Social Protection of the Russian Federation, Her Excellency; Liubov Eltsova;

Deputy Minister of Labour, Industrial Relations and Employment Creation of the Republic of Namibia; His Excellency; Tommy Nambahu;

Deputy Minister of Labour of the Republic of South Africa; His Excellency; Inkosi Phathekile Holomisa;

Secretary-General of the International Social Security Agency, Mr. Hans-Horst Konkolewsky;

Representatives of Business and Organised Labour;

Esteemed delegates;

Distinguished guests, and resource persons;

Senior government officials here present.

Ladies and gentlemen;

On behalf of the Government and the people of the Republic of South Africa, I welcome you to the Fourth Labour and Employment Ministers’ Meeting.

It is indeed an honour for the Republic of South Africa, to lead the BRICS formation during the course of this year. The 10th BRICS Summit held last week, was indeed an important as it marked the first decade of summits. It provided a strong testimony that our countries, indeed, walk the talk. Those who doubted our reasons for existence, are envious of the progress we are making.

It is significant that the Summit of our leaders took place against the backdrop of South Africa’s celebration of the centenary of the birth of our national icon, Nelson Mandela. His values, principles and dedication to the humanity and his immense contribution to the struggle for democracy, and the promotion of the culture of peace throughout the world, resonate perfectly with the core values of the BRICS formation.

We are particularly grateful of the various pledges by BRICS member-countries, to invest in our economy especially in the key strategic assets of our country and by extension our African continent. It will go down in history that when the multilateral trade system was under enormous threat, BRICS stepped up to the challenge.

BRICS has proven beyond any doubt, that real partnership, is the only way to deal with the global challenges facing the world nations.

Distinguished Members, South Africa is extremely pleased to host the Fourth Labour and Employment Ministers’ Meeting. We are also delighted to have successfully convened two meetings of senior officials to prepare and lay the ground for this meeting. On behalf of all my colleagues, please allow me to express our heartfelt gratitude for the job well done.

In the true spirit of tripartism, our Social Partners have participated fully in this work, and we appreciate their hard work in contributing to the vibrancy of the labour and employment stream. We recognise the support rendered by both the International Labour, and the International Social Security Agency, who are today led by their respective heads Messrs Ryder and Konkolewsky. Again, they will be making presentations in this meeting.

South Africa is humbled for being given the opportunity to lead this partnership of powerful nations, who continue to play an important role in shaping global agenda.

Distinguished delegates; The recent BRICS Summit of leaders has demonstrated that indeed this partnership is not just a talk-shop among friends, but a meaningful partnership founded on action. As we work diligently towards realising our vision for the betterment of our citizens, it is important to remember that we have a huge task ahead of us.

Meeting the needs and expectations of no less than 3 billion people, and/or 42 percent of the global population residing in our five countries, is by no means a small mission.

We are confident however, that by utilising different platforms at our disposal, sharing and exchanging views on regulations and policies to shape our labour markets, will provide the necessary impetus towards achieving our stated objectives. The wealth of experience and expertise in the BRICS countries, gives us invaluable competitive edge and the much-needed recipe to deal with the global challenges. It is our ambition to see BRICS Member-Countries lead in championing the global economic system that promotes inclusive growth and sustainable development, as an antidote to eliminate unemployment, poverty and inequality.

Ladies and Gentlemen; We recall that our presidency identified Youth Employment; Gender, Equal Pay for Work of equal value; Social dialogue; Tripartism, Collective Bargaining and Social Protection, as key priority areas going forward. The presentations on the technical areas in respect of these priorities, were shared with the BRICS Member Countries. We will also have an opportunity to comment on these topics tomorrow morning.

First and foremost, we are pleased to announce that the BRICS Network of Labour Research Institutes initiative, which was conceptualised in India and agreed in China, has finally come to life under our presidency.

The research met in the margins of the second officials’ meeting two days ago and crafted a way forward to deepen collaboration in research programmes on labour market matters. We look forward to hearing how the institutes will work with each other going forward.

We have put forward a three-year Working Implementation Plan for 2019-2021, to guide and ensure that all commitments taken at previous Labour and Employment Ministerial meetings, are not only implemented, but they also provide tangible outcomes for our efforts.

In this regard, we are very pleased that the Memorandum of Understanding regarding cooperation in the social and labour sphere, which was agreed on under the Russian Presidency, is also going to be signed during our Presidency.

We also want to underscore that the Labour and Employment track, is closely linked with other BRICS work streams such as finance, education, global economic realities, trade as well as science, technology and innovation. We are very pleased that these issues have been incorporated in the Draft Declaration for the Fourth Labour and Employment Ministerial Meeting. It is our hope, that this will lead to more concrete projects to advance the mandate of the Labour and Employment track.

I look forward to your contributions as we deliberate on the issues on our agenda in the next two days.

I thank you.

Source: Government of South Africa

Minister Gwede Mantashe on Implats retrenchments

Minister Mantashe says Implats demonstrate acting in bad faith

Today’s announcement by Implats that it will retrench thirteen thousand workers is a clear example of a company that is careless, and mindlessly committed to implement its pre-determined outcome; no matter how unworkable that might be. Their reckless actions add injury to insult.

The Department of Mineral Resources was still at the beginning of an engagement with Implats, wherein we encouraged them to consider different options of saving jobs and keeping their operations working.

In this regard, we proposed – to which Implats management agreed, that they should engage on the basis of a Section 52 of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act (MPRDA). The team intended to undertake this process with the company is yet to be announced, and Implats has run off to announce retrenchments.

We have consistently maintained that only an industry that does not regard workers as a valuable asset behaves in this manner. This is worst disconcerting considering the high unemployment rate in the country, as reflected in the latest StatsSA survey.

Further, Implats’ actions are a display of arrogance, hence they can go against the grain at the time when – even – the President of the Republic is calling on all of us to put shoulder to the wheel in turning around our country’s economic fortunes. The Ministry, once more, urges Implats to reconsider its actions and return to the process we all agreed upon. Now is the time to work collectively and make our country prosper, and desist from behavior that is careless and without foresight.

Source: Government of South Africa

Brand South Africa calls for strengthened partnerships to boost job creation

A key aspect of South Africa’s National Development Plan, the blueprint for creating sustainable growth and development in the country, is its emphasis on the power of public-private-partnerships (PPPs), says Brand South Africa’s Chief Marketing Officer, Mrs Linda Magapatona-Sangaret.

Statistics South Africa recently released a quarterly labour force survey, which shows that the unemployment rate rose to 27.2% from 26.7% in the first three months of this financial year. Commenting on these statistics Magapatona-Sangaret said: Economic growth, job creation and poverty alleviation are immense challenges that the government cannot meet alone. Public-private partnerships serve as one of the viable solutions in addressing this challenge as they are a catalyst for economic growth in South Africa.

Our country’s strong capital markets, vibrant economic policies, stable political climate, a competitive private sector, proud democracy and a robust economic outlook, put us in the ultimate position to enhance effective partnerships between public and private sectors for employment creation.

Following President Ramaphosa’s State of the Nation address, Economic Development Minister Ebrahim Patel defined the four key areas which are addressed and inspired by PPPs; transfer of skills, exposure to work, job creation and entrepreneurial activity.

In 2015, the World Bank commissioned a benchmarking study ‘The 2015 Infrascope’ carried out by the Economist Intelligence Unit that evaluated the capacity of African countries to implement sustainable and efficient PPPs. South Africa scored highest overall in all. Factors favouring South Africa, versus its peers on the African continent, is that it has PPP-specific laws and policies, sufficient financial market depth to fully enable PPP financing and National Treasury as an established central unit coordinating and approving PPPs.

The unemployment rate was reported to have jumped 0.5% to 27.2% in the second quarter of 2018, which equates to 6.1 million unemployed South Africans who are looking for work. The jobless rate had remained unchanged at 26.7% in the first three months of the year and the end of 2017.

We are all collectively responsible for doing our part when it comes to job creation in South Africa; the everyday citizen needs to prepare themselves with the appropriate education and direction to succeed when opportunity arises, the business owner needs check out the struggles of the people around him/her and be open to new business ideas, and the government and private sector need to strengthen collaborative efforts for the best interests of the South African people. We need to create an honest assessment of where we are and also where we want to be as a country. From there, we can envision genuine economic progress for the future, concluded Magapatona-Sangaret.

Source: Government of South Africa