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Tertiary institutions supports govt plan to professionalise public service

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In a move that will accelerate the transformation of the public service space in South Africa, the National School of Government (NSG) and Higher Education Institutions have signed an agreement, which will pave the way for government to build on the foundation of a competent public service.

The NSG and ten South African Higher Education Institutions signed an agreement to formalise their five-year partnership aimed at accelerating the delivery of education, training and development programmes aimed to expand the skill base of the public service space.

A week ago, Public Service and Administration Minister, Senzo Mchunu appointed a task team to assist government through the NSG, to finalise the National Implementation Framework towards the professionalisation of the public service.

The framework is in line with the commitment made by the sixth administration to create a capable, ethical and developmental public service.

Last year, the NSG embarked on a bid process by issuing a call for partnership with Higher Education Institutions to carry out various education, training and development functions.

Following a rigorous process, ten institutions were successfully met the set criteria and will be appointed from time to time for specific projects.

The ten Higher Education Institutions selected to collaborate with the NSG are:

  • Fort Hare University • Nelson Mandela University • University of Pretoria • Tshwane University of Technology • University of Johannesburg • Rhodes Business School • North West University• Durban University of technology • Stellenbosch University • Free State University

The Principal of the NSG, Busani Ngcaweni said: “key deliverables of this partnership involves the development and review of curriculum in various areas related to public sector performance and development, quality assurance and joint certification of programmes, co-developed and delivery of NSG programmes using the Higher Education Institutions human resources/expertise…

“Providing expert input in various education and training areas of relevant fields and subject-matters…undertake research projects with the NSG as well as the provision of coaching and mentoring services to various levels of public sector officials.

“The partnership with the higher learning institutions enables the NSG to provide the programmes throughout the country, which expands the scope of professional development for public sector employees and leaders.”

In selected cases, the programme will help participants with the recognition of prior learning while also opening opportunities for further study in relevant fields.

According to Ngcaweni, it is South Africans who will benefit from this intervention, as skilled, effective, efficient, ethical and professional public servants committed to improving the well-being of society will serve them.

“Public servants, members of the executive, SoEs employees, members of legislatures, councilors and employees of all organs of state will be eligible to enroll for programmes delivered through this partnership on a cost recovery basis.

“This is not a public [service] bursary scheme. Building a meritocratic and corruption-free civil service capable of building compacts and managing resources prudently is a national effort requiring all hands on deck,” said the NSG Principal.