62,18%vacancy rate at city unit

2016-10-28 11:11
City slow to replace staff.

City slow to replace staff. (File)

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Msunduzi Municipality has admitted its high vacancy rate in its infrastructure service section is alarming and has a severe impact on service delivery.

The municipality has also warned that this could lead to service delivery protests, and that it is compromising the safety of its employees who are exceeding the 40 hours per month overtime limit because of the shortage of staff.

The crippling vacancy rate at the business unit that is mandated to carry out mostly infrastructure maintenance and upgrades, currently sits at 62,18%.

According to a report presented during an executive committee meeting yesterday, the city’s staff complement has been shrinking since 2010 as more and more people are leaving the municipality.

In January 2010, the business unit had a staff compliment of 1 047 employees.

By March this year, records show the city had 745 employees, a loss of 302 employees.

While more and more employees are heading towards the exit door, the municipality has been slow in appointing replacements.

Out of the 380 people that have left the municipality since 2010, only 71 have been replaced.

The most hard hit business units are roads and transportation, which have a vacancy rate of 73,69%, the fleet section with a vacancy rate of 63,76%, the building section with a vacancy rate of 63,51% and water and sanitation sitting at 54,12%.

The municipality has 707 general worker posts but has hired only 256 workers, leaving 451 posts vacant.

The stats show that over 50% of the employees maybe heading for the exit door in the near future as they are over the age of 50.

Of the employees, 15,46% are over 60 years of age and have less than five years to work.

A total of 32,8% (244 employees) are 55 years or older, this being the age where employees may consider early retirement, according to the document that was presented by acting municipal manager Sizwe Hadebe.

“The infrastructure services business unit will need to carefully manage the 55+ age group to ensure appropriate skills transfer, as well as implementing proper procedures which are not people dependent, thus ensuring continuation of functions when personnel leave.

“Infrastructure services is involved in ‘visible’ service delivery, and non-performance affects the public directly, and could lead to service delivery protests,” warns the document.

The document shows that 60% of the municipality’s workers are exceeding the legal 40 hours per month overtime maximum.

“Some [are] even exceeding 150 hours. While it maybe argued that the overtime work is emergency in nature, the excessive hours compromise the safety of employees, and can lead to serious, if not fatal accidents,” said the document.

Read more on:    msunduzi municipality

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