Today's Labour News

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DlodloBL Premium reports that Public Services and Administration Minister Ayanda Dlodlo said on Tuesday that SA’s R587bn public sector wage bill had shot through the ceiling and the government would have to cut back on critical services if it failed to rein in pay increases.  

Salaries for public servants have been growing at rates higher than inflation and consumed 35% of expenditure in 2017, up from 32.9% in 2007.  In 2018, public servants are set to receive above-inflation wage increases of between 6% and 7%.  The Treasury estimates that the consumer inflation rate will remain in the 5.3% to 5.5% band over the next three years.  Although public-sector unions have yet to sign the agreement, the government can implement it unilaterally after 30 days.  The Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union (Popcru) was the only union to sign the draft agreement on Monday.  Four other unions rejected it, while five are still consulting their members for mandates.  "If you look at wages and think we take from grants to pay salaries, I don’t know what we will do on the day that our people revolt against government, its employees and political parties.  It has happened in many other countries," Dlodlo observed.  She said she could not guarantee the government would not resort to freezing posts  Performance-review mechanisms would have to be reviewed, while "weeding out" nonperformers was also in Dlodlo’s sights.

  • Read this report by Theto Mahlakoana in full at BL Premium (paywall access)

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