Baloyi challenges public servants' body

2011-03-15 14:45

Johannesburg - Public Service Minister Richard Baloyi on Tuesday questioned whether the Public Service Commission (PSC) has teeth or is just churning out recommendations.

Delivering his keynote address at the 2nd Biennial Labour Relations Conference, Baloyi praised the commission for being a custodian of good governance but at the same time challenged it to ensure implementation of resolutions.

"We need to ask ourselves if the PSC has teeth, does it have power or the ability to enforce adherence to rules. We need to investigate that," he said.

The conference was convened by both the PSC and the Public Service Coordinating Bargaining Council (PSCBC). It was postponed last year because of the public service strike in August.

Its main aim is to sustain dialogue on the integration and coordination of labour relations in the public service sector.

Baloyi said the event was an opportunity to do some introspection on issues concerning both the PSC and the PSCBC.

These include discussions on what really constitutes a fair offer or demand with regards to salary disputes, and whether the PSCBC was acting freely without fear or favour.

What the government wants to see is labour peace, the advancement of productivity and the fight against corruption within the public service, he said, adding that government is also ready to be advised.

Baloyi also referred to organised labour as being an important partner in labour relations issues, but warned that while that was the case it did not mean there was no room for improvement.

The first conference of this nature in 2007 identified higher level problems, such as the effect of corruption on growth and development as well as unemployment.

It resolved to promote sound labour relations, which could be done through the retention of labour relations practitioners.