Ne­hawu moves to clip Batha­bile’s wings

The Star Early Edition - - POLITICS - MAYIBONGWE MAQHINA

THE Na­tional Ed­u­ca­tion Health and Al­lied Work­ers Union (Ne­hawu) wants So­cial De­vel­op­ment Min­is­ter Batha­bile Dlamini’s pow­ers over the SA So­cial Se­cu­rity Agency (Sassa) to be cur­tailed.

This comes days af­ter Thokozani Mag­waza’s ten­ure as Sassa chief ex­ec­u­tive came to an end, fol­low­ing death threats and al­le­ga­tions he had been pres­sured to quit while ne­go­ti­at­ing a part­ner­ship with the SA Post Of­fice on the dis­tri­bu­tion of so­cial grants next year.

Ne­hawu spokesper­son Khaya Xaba said yes­ter­day Dlamini’s role in the cri­sis left many ques­tions unan­swered. “She is hell-bent on desta­bil­is­ing the so­cial de­vel­op­ment sec­tor through her in­ter­fer­ence with the day-to-day man­age­ment of op­er­a­tions. This sit­u­a­tion has spread to the Na­tional De­vel­op­ment Agency (NDA), which is on the brink of col­lapse.”

Xaba said the union was call­ing on Par­lia­ment to amend the So­cial Se­cu­rity Act to strengthen gov­er­nance at Sassa. “In its cur­rent form, the act does not make pro­vi­sion for the es­tab­lish­ment of an in­de­pen­dent board, hence the in­ter­fer­ence by the min­is­ter in Sassa op­er­a­tions,” Xaba said.

“This ar­range­ment leaves any chief ex­ec­u­tive vul­ner­a­ble to un­rea­son­able in­struc­tions from the pow­ers that be, or face the chop,” he added. The pro­posal drew mixed re­ac­tion from par­ties and Par­lia­ment.

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