Concern over public service vacancies

office table
office table

The public service is expected to run into service delivery constraints in the next few years as a tenth of posts in national and provincial government departments are vacant and these departments are terminating employment at a faster rate than they are hiring.

Up to 134‚919 of the public service’s 1‚307‚552 posts are vacant‚ according to the third quarter report on the public service by the Public Service Commission.

In the period from July to end-September‚ 74‚118 (55%) of the vacancies were at an administrative operating level‚ while 58‚567 are for posts "at the coalface of service delivery"‚ according to the commission.

The public service also terminated 7‚975 appointments compared with making 6‚004 new appointments.

This comes amid the Treasury’s efforts to curb spending on the public service by freezing the posts. Observers have raised concern this could compromise delivery in key functions such as healthcare and education.

This article first appeared on Business Day