'Promotion promises for 15 years'

Alex Matlala

Alex Matlala

The Limpopo provincial government has not yet effected the promotion of nearly 120000 civil servants who were absorbed into the new government from the former homelands administration.

The workers, in different departments, were inherited from the old apartheid government in 1994. They were absorbed from the former Lebowa, Gazankulu and Venda homelands.

The civil servants were forced to undergo screening processes before they could be absorbed into the new government. Those who qualified were promised rank promotions - but to date nothing has allegedly materialised.

In 1998, four years after the new dispensation, the workers opened talks with the provincial government to settle the matter, but all came to naught.

Their grievances were later reported to an independent arbitrator, Joe Campanella, who ruled that it was unfair of the government not to implement the promotions of the workers who were assessed.

Ten years later, the provincial government has still not honoured its promise of promotion.

"We are earning peanuts. Young boys who have just come into the system have been promoted five times while we are stuck in the same positions," said one of the workers.

Sowetan is in possession of a list of workers who were inherited from homelands and are supposed to have been promoted by now.

The legal representative of the workers, Kgao Mahlase, said the money owed to workers by the government could be estimated at about R1billion now.

Spokesman for the provincial government, Mohale Nchabeleng, said yesterday that the matter was receiving attention. "Our lawyers are busy with the matter."