Public Service and Administration Minister, Ms Noxolo Kiviet

The proposed Public Administration Management Amendment Bill and the Public Service Amendment Bill will be tabled in Parliament by March 31, 2023.

This was confirmed by newly sworn-in Public Service and Administration Minister, Ms Noxolo Kiviet while responding to a Parliamentary Question for written reply.

“The Public Administration Management Amendment Bill and the Public Service Amendment Bill have both been drafted, consulted publicly, and processed in terms of the requisite internal and statutory processes.

“The Bills are being processed to Cabinet for approval to table to Parliament by 31 March 2023,” she said.

Minister Kiviet said measures have been put in place to ensure that public servants are not conducting business with any organ of state and/or being a director of a public or private company conducting business with the state.

To strengthen the implementation of section 8, her department monitors the Central Supplier Database (CSD) monthly.

This database (hosted by National Treasury) contains the information of all individuals seeking to tender business with government.

The information on this system is compared with information on the Personnel Salary System (PERSAL) to identify public service employees attempting to register on the CSD.

As soon as the DPSA detects employees on the CSD list, their departments are informed to take disciplinary steps and if guilty of conducting business with the State, to open a criminal case with the South African Police Service (SAPS).

The DPSA follow up with the affected departments monthly to establish progress made.

The DPSA, South African Police Service (SAPS) and the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) also formed a task team that assists departments with the investigation process and to fast-track cases for prosecution.

According to the latest report from the Public Service Commission (PSC), a total of 379 senior managers including Heads of departments at national departments, have found to be engaged in other remunerative work.

“In terms of section 30 of the Public Service Act, 1994 (PSA), public service employees (including senior managers and heads of departments) are allowed to perform other remunerative work outside their employment with the written permission of the executive authority of the department.

“This would also apply to the 379 senior managers identified in the Public Service Commission Report to be performing other remunerative work.

Regulation 24 of the Public Service Regulations, 2016 (PSR), established a formal process that employees must follow to apply for permission to perform other remunerative work.

“Therefore, if permission was received to perform other remunerative work by completing the prescribed form, and the application was approved by the executive authority or delegated authority, the employee concerned will be allowed to perform other remunerative work for 12 months, after which the permission will expire, and the employee will have to request for new approval.

“If successful, the employee will be provided with a certificate of approval that is valid for twelve calendar months.

“This certificate of approval is attached when the employee concerned completes his/her financial disclosures on the eDisclosure system and serves as proof of permission to perform other remunerative work.

“This certificate is verified during the lifestyle review process to determine if approval was sought and serves as a measure to detect employees performing other remunerative work without permission and those conducting business with the state,” he said.

Minister Kiviet further said that the procedure that allows employees to perform other remunerative work (as per Regulation 24 of the PSR) does not in any way permit public servants to request permission to conduct business with the state.

She singled out section 8 of the Public Administration Management Act, 2014 that criminalizes the act of public servants conducting business with the state, as the contravention of this section is a criminal offence.

The Minister said any person found guilty of the offence is liable to a fine or imprisonment for a period not exceeding 5 years or both.