A state of sus­pen­sions

Business Day - - OPINION -

It is ap­palling that a total of 152 fi­nan­cial mis­con­duct cases have been in­ves­ti­gated in the 2016-17 fi­nan­cial year in the De­part­ment of Labour. Over and above this, 135 fraud-re­lated cases were un­der in­ves­ti­ga­tion, of which only 49 were com­pleted.

What is not known is how many of the in­di­vid­u­als in­volved are on sus­pen­sion, or how long they have been on sus­pen­sion. The govern­ment prac­tice of sus­pend­ing em­ploy­ees who are sus­pected of fraud is a costly ex­er­cise in it­self. Many are sus­pended for months on full salary. In many cases, the cost of the sus­pen­sion far sur­passes that of the ini­tial fraud.

It seems to be gov­ern­men­tal prac­tice to sus­pend in­di­vid­u­als and then to do noth­ing for years on end. If man­agers in the pri­vate sec­tor sus­pended staff for lengthy pe­ri­ods, they would have to jus­tify the in­ac­tiv­ity and cost, and may face dis­ci­plinary ac­tion them­selves. Be­cause it is tax­payer money that is be­ing wasted, no one seems to be in­ter­ested.

Michael Ba­graim, DA MP Shadow labour min­is­ter

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa

© PressReader. All rights reserved.