Salaries to cost state R30bn - Sisulu

2012-06-19 11:58

Pretoria - Public service salary increases will cost the state R30bn, Public Service Minister Lindiwe Sisulu said on Tuesday.

"This is R8.1bn over what we have budgeted for," she told reporters in Pretoria.

"We will need to go into our reserves."

She said the public service wage bill had risen from R211bn in 2008/2009 to R314.9bn in 2010/1011. It now constituted 38.7% of consolidated non-interest spending.

Sisulu said government had offered public service workers a 9% increase made up of a 6.5% salary increase and a 2.5% increase in benefits.

Labour was demanding an 8% salary increase.

Negotiations broke down

The offer from government also included the recognition of long service, an increase in night shift allowance, a cash bonus of 10% of employee's salary on improvement of qualifications, and an increase in shop steward, family responsibility, and pre-natal leave.

It also offered an increase in the monthly allowance for housing from R800 to R900 with the allowance to be converted into a subsidy towards a bond at the introduction of the government employees housing scheme, said Sisulu.

Negotiations between the two parties broke down last week when government made its final offer. The unions have declared a wage dispute.

Sisulu said Treasury had budgeted for only a 5% increase.

"Government [is] in a situation where 9% is way above what it has budgeted for," she said.


Salary increases higher than the rate of inflation would be unsustainable.

Sisulu said government was inviting labour back to the negotiating table.

"They will be surprised that I have no horns and there is no devil in me," Sisulu told reporters in Pretoria.

"It is in their interest that we find an amicable solution."

She said government wanted to prevent workers from going on strike.

"Right here and now we have what in my language we might call "clear and present dangers" - that of a looming potential wage dispute," said Sisulu.

"The state of [the] global economy, the reality of our own limited budget, our own credit rating and credibility, makes me hope and believe that labour and ourselves as government have no appetite for a dispute and worse, a strike."

The Independent Labour Caucus (ILC), which declared a wage dispute with the state after public sector pay talks broke down, was not immediately available for comment.

Sisulu denied reports that she was a "union basher". This related to her stance on unions within the SA National Defence Force.

"As far as the ruling party [ANC] is concerned, and the policy of the defence force, there is no place for unions in the defence force," said Sisulu.

"There is no place in the defence force for ill-discipline."

She was referring to striking defence force officers who went on the rampage at the Union Buildings in Pretoria in 2009.


Sisulu was moved from defence to public service by President Jacob Zuma during a Cabinet reshuffle last week.

She said that, on average, seven months a year were spent negotiating with public service workers.

"I don't believe this is right."

Sisulu said it would be in labour's favour to have an amicable resolution at the earliest possible time.

It would also allow her as minister to build a relationship with labour which would culminate in a service delivery charter.

"A service charter where we will both develop principles governing increases in remuneration conditions... a service charter where salary increases are based on productivity and performance improvements," she said.

The charter would be necessary for government to function properly.

"We cannot go on like this with a wage bill that is unaffordable.

"After a series of negotiations we are at a point where we can influence and talk to labour so that we can find each other," said Sisulu.

  • Gigo - 2012-06-19 12:03

    Lindiwe Sisulu, she's so beatiful wow.Anyway give her time and space,she's new in that department..

      Irene - 2012-06-19 12:15

      You think that road kill on her head is beautiful?

      smili.fication - 2012-06-19 12:18

      Irene I LOLOLOL

      Gigo - 2012-06-19 12:22

      Irene?You again,did you learn to speak a Zulu?

      max.reynecke - 2012-06-19 12:39

      She is deceptive, the 30bn includes all Government salaries including the over paid politicians and senior management. These negotiations is only for salary levels 1 to 12, the lowest paid officials like teachers, police etc. The 2.5% increase in bennefits is just a lie, they want to take away the housing subsidy of R450 per month that is the only bennefit left.

      tshifhiwa.vandermunalisi - 2012-06-19 12:44

      @Gigo she is endeed a beatiful woman, no doubt about that.

      Pat - 2012-06-19 13:15

      @steen, if she is as beautiful as your spelling, then u must be blind!! shame

      Peter - 2012-06-19 13:19

      Can a f***ing snake be beautiful?

      mihaip007 - 2012-06-19 13:20

      Well if she needs time, she did not take much to count in billions! What is this a thumbsuck? i am SURE it takes LONGER than one week in the position to be able to establish the costs! Or did she read it from the paper in front of her? Wow it is VERY effieicent for a VERY inefficient department to come up with figures!

      tshifhiwa.vandermunalisi - 2012-06-19 13:59

      Who is beautiful between Hellen Zille and Lindiwe Sisulu?? Lol Zille looks like a Zombi.

      Irene - 2012-06-19 14:15

      Steen ~ How old are you? 12? Next you'll be saying you're better looking than Brad Pitt! ROTFLMAO!

      tshifhiwa.vandermunalisi - 2012-06-19 14:44

      @Irene, are you disagreeing with the fact that Zille is ugly? She is so ugly that is not even funny anymore. You can never compare Sisulu and Zille, not in this life time.

      Revelgen - 2012-06-19 15:16

      Heck, Gigo, if you can't comment on an adult level, rather don't. On the score of Public Service salaries, the way to make budget is to fire half of them. If they did their jobs properly, we would not need to spend R30 billion of our hard-earned tax money.

  • ndyeboreginaldmazawule - 2012-06-19 12:06

    Well if that be fact please minister convince the unions that they will get an increase in the near future if their demands cannot be met now, and remember that inflation affects them too.

      Konstabel - 2012-06-19 13:36

      SA's government is heading for bankrupcy if the keep giving in to above inflation increases to their totally bloated and inefficient public service workers. With the sluggish economy many people in the private sector are gettin no or small increases and even loosing their jobs which means that less tax money is collected. Unions must wake up and also take into account ecconomic realities otherwise they are sabotaging the country.

      bennie.kruger.5 - 2012-06-19 13:45

      Sisulu has in few words admitted that the Government is on the verge of bankrupcy , the unsustainable future we warned about has arrived. Get out the popcorn and Oros because many tyres are going up in flames. Once the volk have descovered the truth all hell is going to break loose.

  • smili.fication - 2012-06-19 12:06

    30bn? Yeah, and ANC officials? How much are we paying for there corruption, wives, and jets? The public service workers earn half as much as you fat cats. You have have the biggest slice of the cake. Nom Nom nom.... Down with the ANC!!!!

      Gigo - 2012-06-19 12:23


      smili.fication - 2012-06-19 12:27

      ^^^ Indeed... look! A TROLL!

  • charlesdumbwin.dumbwin - 2012-06-19 12:08

    I guess that's one way to bring about 'economic freedom' for the masses. Just employ them all into government and pay them with our tax money.

      smili.fication - 2012-06-19 12:14

      That what they are doing. They have chased industry away, and have insured we are a service economy catering to ANC condom comrades.... it bloody crazy! That Mbeki guy brought it up.

      Byron - 2012-06-19 12:17

      they also pay tax

      charlesdumbwin.dumbwin - 2012-06-19 12:24

      Byron, you mean we are all paying tax twice ??? Our taxes are being taxed? Wow, talk about corruption.

  • Timothy - 2012-06-19 12:09

    And they want to run an 'everyone employed by the government kind of state' good luck with that

  • Rob.Trianglem - 2012-06-19 12:11

    This place is a total F-up. Negotiating for 7 months, have you ever heard of this utter crap before. I wonder how much money is being waisted on all this negotiating waste of time. Obviously this is the reason why we are in such a mess with no jobs etc. people are just too lazy but want money to fall from the tree!!

  • johan.lombard.33 - 2012-06-19 12:11

    And I am sure 20Billion will go to the top few in management?

  • jwdupreez - 2012-06-19 12:14

    ......and what do you expect if the Civil Service is nothing more than a welfare organisation .....(alternatively used as a source for crosses on a voting slip)....Very convieniently the ANC "forgot" that the Civil Service is there to serve South Africa and not its corrupt policies

      jmasha3 - 2012-06-19 13:04

      In limpopo all civil servants are ANC card carrying members,they are rewarded by jobs for campaigning for the ANC.this whole nonsense is destroying our country.

  • smallies - 2012-06-19 12:16

    wonder maar net of die agbare min en haar cronies in die parlement ook net n 4;5 persent sou aanvaar soos hulle die staatsamptenare wou gee,anders as hulle het ons nie ampetelike wonings,karre,kokke en lugmag vliegtuie om ons rond te karwei nie.inflasie byt seer en al die heffings wat hulle die jaar op die petrol prys alleen geplaas het het daai 4;5 pers al klaar ingesluk

  • Irene - 2012-06-19 12:17

    This bunch are already paid 34% more than civil servants internationally and they also do 99% less work than the rest of the world. So tired of paying tax only to have it stolen by corrupt politicians or doled out to incompetent civil servants.

      JJ - 2012-06-19 12:38

      So what solution do you have? You like complaining but no attempt to suggest how we can find a way forward. Life is tough at basically minimum wage, don't forget they also face the same basic utility increase we do which are far above inflation. I hope you're happy when your employer offers you a 4% increase, i certainly wouldn't be.

      smili.fication - 2012-06-19 12:43

      Irene suggestion, like mine.... Is to vote in another goverment. One which is not always doing the whim of the trade unions. One which is stable. One which understand the economy and how to create jobs. One which is not corrupt. One which caters to the people. One which spends less on salaries for top officials and more service delivery - So vote DA or Cope.

      Christian J Denyschen - 2012-06-19 12:48

      jj if only you could see the irony in your comment, where is your solution?

      Irene - 2012-06-19 12:50

      jj.jeno.1 ~ My employer doesn't give me increases. I work for myself so I determine how much money I want based on how hard I want to work. The difference is that I work for my money, unlike these civil servants who spend more time striking than working and when they are striking, does anybody even notice that they're not behind their desks? The only solution to anything is to get rid of the cANCer. Why don't you ask yourself why cANCer employees need to be paid 34% more than anywhere else in the world? Time people start accepting what their abilities are in relation to the type of salary they are able to demand.

      JJ - 2012-06-19 13:25

      @Smili for sure I agree fully it is time for a change on Government, but right now we have to deal with the one we have!! @Christian True, however i was more addressing Irene out of experience from reading her comments. My suggestion? I would say 9% is too high, perhaps increases of above inflation (maybe 6.5%) over a couple of years to balance it out rather than one large increase. @Irene I don't disagree that the ANC need to go, but they are in charge now. If they don't pay and the people strike you'll lay blame on the ANC, when they do pay you lay blame on the ANC. They are between a rock and a hard place with people like you.

  • Riad - 2012-06-19 12:21

    Are we gonna go back to March March March all the way to December…

  • Shelley - 2012-06-19 12:21

    wow and all we get every year is 4.5% - take it or leave it

      charlesdumbwin.dumbwin - 2012-06-19 12:27

      4-5% ??? Lucky you

      Shelley - 2012-06-19 12:30

      LOl Charles - Yeah lucky me, what i would'nt give for a 9% increase. LOL

  • koos.vandermerwe.338 - 2012-06-19 12:23

    'salary increase based on performance' will never happen. These wekas will have to take a 70% cut in salary if you want to pay them according to their performance.

  • kseyffert - 2012-06-19 12:24

    Strikers go on rampage, Bill the union for all damages. Let get real though cost of living only 6% I think that it is about time the government took a careful look at just how this is determined. This figure needs to reflect the man on the street not some statistics thingy to look good.

  • Steve - 2012-06-19 12:32

    time to cut all ministers salaries to the value of a gp in a gov hospital and use the balance towards delivery . we using too much moola towards salries and not delivery : it is not sustainable with a low tax pool !! time to cut the gov workforce

  • Sylvester.Mohloli - 2012-06-19 12:36

    Being a servant of the public myself, i dont see how i can be against a performance based increase system, they will just have to probably outsource it to avoid managers hampering their employees just coz they dont get along, only problem with the latter is the tender part of it,eish

      Philimsomi - 2012-06-19 13:48

      other provinces used to give bonuses based on that, and the reason they stopped it is because only certain people were getting the bonus every year,

  • Gavin - 2012-06-19 12:36

    holy dinosaur crap ! R30 billion for people whose only talent is doing sweet f all and then demanding increases and striking for it. I wish I could pat my union fees and then ride the increase train into the sunset. public servants are anything but - this is such a contradiction in terms. now we know why the roads have holes in them, the power keeps going off and water system us rusting - ALL THE F'ING MONEY IS GOING INTO THE PUBLIC SERVANTS POCKETS.

      Philimsomi - 2012-06-19 13:44

      so yoy don't see anything good done by publc servants?in all depts,health edu,etc?

  • Fawzia - 2012-06-19 12:41

    I suggest the upper echelons of govt should trim their fat salaries & let some of their salary cuts filter down to those who are underpaid or are still waiting to be paid. Is this govt any different from the apartheid era, then the critrion was colour of skin, currently the criterion is whos who & the powers that be & bank balances

  • - 2012-06-19 12:42

    please do not start so soon. you are only three days in the job.

  • Renard De Souza - 2012-06-19 12:45

    About time somebody sets these unions straight, their bullying tactics need to be dealt with. I agree that increases are needed but lets keep it real ppl.

      Tankiso Mogoje - 2012-06-19 15:32

      9% is not even real my friend,let alone the 800 of housing allowance.The president and his ministers will be giving themselves a 23% increase in no time i tell you.

  • Johan - 2012-06-19 12:46

    This is how the goverment buys votes -learnt well from Zimbabwe

  • keith.recore - 2012-06-19 12:47

    at a time when so many are unemployed, so many citizens don't have drinkable water or services, union leadership should step up negotiate in good faith, a realistic wage increase that the country can live with and meets the needs of their members. Union leadership should show the country it has the best interest of everyone, they are interested in good pay for good performance. This will instill confidence in the process, secure a decent wage and end the foolishness of continuous negotiations, that leads to instability. Now is a time for stability/security for your workers and for South Africa. Not foolishness. Step up show the country and your workers you can lead! Get the economy going and reap the rewards down the road.

  • arthur.hugh - 2012-06-19 12:52

    Aaagh. Take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take TAKE take

      Hadebe - 2012-06-19 14:08

      That equals to your flippin mind

  • Pieter Kunz - 2012-06-19 12:55

    Always funny how state mentions inflation when they talk about increase % for the state workers but they themselves up their salaries between 20-30% a year. Just look at that city managers earn now and the outrages increases they received! Let them eat cake!!!

  • raymond.sebeela - 2012-06-19 13:03

    If only the price of development was not high. Food, fuel, electricity, interest rates on bonds, tax was not high, I guese everybody will be happy with what they get... But we can't afford to stop development

  • tsietsi.mshengu - 2012-06-19 13:05

    We as public servants are happy with the latest offer. The union leadership wants to use us as pawns towards Mangaung. We don't want to strike.

      tsietsi.mshengu - 2012-06-19 13:42

      Irene how do you know that I don't deserve it? Don't paint all public servants with one brush. Some of us are happy with the offer considering that there are people who are worse off.

      duma.nkabinde - 2012-06-19 14:02

      What big balls you have Irene, Tsietsi I'm impressed by your honesty and I believe you do your work dilligently.Ngiyabonga soja labansundu

  • Alf - 2012-06-19 13:06

    Let our president and ministers take a cut in their exhorbitant salaries for stuffing up the country - problem solved!

  • johann.visser.98 - 2012-06-19 13:07

    This ANC,BEE regeim is getting rediculas.

  • Ringeta - 2012-06-19 13:10

    YES , we do have the money. so pay them they deserve that. How much money is given to one tenderer.

  • jmasha3 - 2012-06-19 13:14

    Slash the salaries and benefits of the President,Ministers e.t.c.Ban unions in the public sector.

  • jmasha3 - 2012-06-19 13:14

    Slash the salaries and benefits of the President,Ministers e.t.c.Ban unions in the public sector.

  • ronel.kriek.5 - 2012-06-19 13:17

    ek wonder net sisulu watter salaris vat jy huis toe, is dit nodig dat jy moet budget op jou imkomste, ek glo nie, moeti onregverdig wees

  • TumeloMakau - 2012-06-19 13:19

    We realy need an increase.everything is up but we still get payed same amount we were geting last year

  • Mosuoe - 2012-06-19 13:19

    Give IMF ,5billion dollars and you will afford to give Public Servants what they demand with 1,5 billion dollars.Don't play rich when we are suffering!

  • david.mlambo.77 - 2012-06-19 13:22

    Its a shame that the negligent goverment denies workers a increase above inflation, shawly workers need their lively hoods sustaind against inflation which the goverment has failed to curb.

  • james.m.wood.773 - 2012-06-19 13:33

    She says that their salaries are too high, what about hers? Would she mind disclosing that along with her proposed increase? Chances are their is a vast difference in what she wants to do for those she is supposed to serve and what she wants to do for herself at our expense. Cry the beloved country of woe and dispair.

  • badballie - 2012-06-19 13:33

    the profit and wage difference between what workers earn and the salaries of the elite has widened to around 900% since 1948, the six percent inflation rate is also a thumb suck figure, inflation being much higher that 10%, net alone 6%. As Henry Ford said if people actually understood the laws of banking and trade the world would have long since been driven into a war between government and its own subjects, and the middle class merrily continues to pay 45% tax rates while those that earn more in a day than the average man sees in a year still pay little more than 25% internationally.

  • tracy.hepburn.71 - 2012-06-19 13:47

    Only budgeted for 5%! What junk! Bad planning... fire the lot!

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