‘Freeze’ on hiring? No problem. State brings in more casual labour, stats show

2015-10-29 11:50

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Part-time workers in all government spheres rose by 70% in 2014 to 470 176, according to Statistics SA. 

The annual compendium of South African Statistics covering 2014 was published today and gives the split between part-time and full-time workers in all formal sectors. 

In his medium-term budget review this month, Minister of Finance Nhlanhla Nene claimed that government employment has been dropping since 2012 and provincial departments now employ about 2% less people than in 2012. 

What he didn’t mention was that the number of “part-time” workers in those provincial departments have continued to increase faster than the permanent ones have been leaving. 

The result is that provincial government employment last year fell by about 7 000 permanent jobs to 915 341, but part-time jobs rose by 32 000 to 203 407. 

The drop-off in permanent provincial employment has continued this year, according to Nene. 

In reality the provincial government workforce is still increasing every year. 

At the local government level the increase in part-time workers is more extreme, demonstrating that the “freeze” on expanding state employment announced last year is apparently being circumvented by bringing in more casual labour. 

Local government increased its part-time workers by 89% to 53 711, now making up 17% of workers at that level. 

The most extreme and baffling shift to part-time has however occurred in the “other government” sector, which includes the universities and parastatal institutions. 

Their part-time workers shot up by 348% to 168 482, far surpassing the number of permanent employees – 107 339. 

Read more on:    stats sa  |  nhlanhla ­nene  |  government  |  labour

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