30% cap on overtime

2013-11-04 00:00

THE KwaZulu-Natal Sports and Recreation Department says its staff will no longer be allowed to pocket more than 30% of their salaries in overtime pay.

Appearing before the Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa) last week, the department said it is considering changing the conditions of service for staff to not claim for overtime for weekends.

The department blamed vacant positions and sports events being held over weekends for money paid in overtime.

Acting chief finance officer Z.K. Buthelezi said systems have since been put in place.

“If it [overtime] is over 30% [of a person’s salary], approval is now forwarded to the head of department for assessment. Two cases were picked up and we could not manage without those officers performing overtime,” Buthelezi said.

Department head Rohini Naidoo said: “We are to re-evaluate all these posts and we need to look to include weekends so that we don’t claim [overtime] on weekends.”

In the meantime, the department would ensure that overtime did not exceed 30% of salaries.

The department obtained an unqualified audit opinion with several matters of emphasis.

An amount of R92,93 million was recorded as irregular expenditure due to the failure to follow tender policies and some department officials were undertaking paid work outside the department without permission, while junior staff were acting in senior posts.

Five officials in the supply chain unit had resigned while investigations into the unit were being conducted.

The department had also underspent its budget by R19,44 million due to delays in the construction of district offices in Ugu and Sisonke, and the non-filling of vacant posts.

Scopa chairperson Sipho Nkosi said the department continued returning to the committee to explain itself for the same shortcomings.

“We are quite concerned about the mistakes that your department commits year in and year out. There are things we anticipate, but Sport and Recreation will be found wanting every year,” he said.

The DA’s Mark Steele said it was shocking that the department had incurred irregular expenditure for the fourth consecutive year.

“I can’t see why this department is being allowed to carry out any procurement of its own after four years of irregular expenditure,” he said.

Buthelezi said vacant posts would be filled when the organogram was approved by the Public Service and Administration Department, and that policies and action plans to address irregular expenditure were in place.

Naidoo, who took over the department in February, said many problems picked up during the audit had taken place when the department was without a head.

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