Off the mark

Finweek English Edition - - Cover -

GOV­ERN­MENT’S SKILLS REVO­LU­TION – billed as South Africa’s great hope for in­fra­struc­ture de­vel­op­ment and eco­nomic growth – is be­ing choked. The Joint Ini­tia­tive on Pri­or­ity Skills Ac­qui­si­tion (Jipsa) was in­tro­duced in 2006 pre­cisely be­cause the over­all sys­tem for de­vel­op­ing skills was full of block­ages.

Jipsa’s Makano Moro­jele says Jipsa’s big­gest achieve­ment has been its abil­ity to cre­ate a com­mon plat­form for a range of pub­lic and pri­vate or­gan­i­sa­tions in­volved in skills de­vel­op­ment to un­der­stand the na­ture and ex­tent of the prob­lem and find prac­ti­cal so­lu­tions.

How­ever, Jipsa will soon be no more. It’s be­ing phased out, to be re­placed by the Hu­man Re­source De­vel­op­ment Coun­cil (HRDC) on 1 April this year. While the Ed­u­ca­tion Depart­ment is tak­ing charge of this new an­i­mal, it’s not yet clear where it will be lo­cated, how it’ll work and to what ex­tent it will draw on ex­pe­ri­ences and ad­dress the lessons learned.

“There has to be a ded­i­cated, flex­i­ble and ag­ile agency con­tin­u­ously press­ing the right but­tons. By that I don’t mean sim­ply allocating tasks. It has to be much more in­volved in pro­vid­ing in­tel­lec­tual cap­i­tal, mon­i­tor­ing, tracking progress and mak­ing sure that busi­ness cy­cles feed back into train­ing,” says Moro­jele, who con­cedes the big­gest prob­lem with the cur­rent sys­tem of

Sys­tem is shoot­ing in the dark. Mem­bat­hisa Md­lad­lana

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