Government has threatened to close down its Extended Public Works Programme (EPWP) if municipalities continue to defy its recruitment guidelines. Political interference and corruption is reportedly to be rife in this programme. Municipal officials are allegedly accepting bribes in exchange for jobs and are also hiring political affiliates.
The programme is meant to curb the country’s unemployment rate and relieve millions of South Africans living below the bread line. However, it is now allegedly been corrupted by greedy municipal officials, leaving thousands of trained youth jobless.
Government has announced guidelines to be followed when recruiting for the programme, which includes hiring trained individuals.
“I come from a very poor family and growing we used to rely a lot on food parcels but now that I have trained for this programme, I can now for the first time be able to take care of my family,” says EPWP training graduate Silindile Msane
“I am eternally grateful for the opening of this cooperative, now I can go back and work for my community, ” said another beneficiary of the programme, Musawenkosi Mthiyane.
Since its inception in 2014, the programme has created 3,3 million job opportunities.
“There must be fairness in the way they deal with recruitment. Secondly there must be transparency; everybody must be able to see what criterion has been used to hire people. Lastly there must be equity when dealing with this programme,” says Minister of Public Works Thulas Nxesi.
Nxesi says it’s important for communities to know these guidelines so they can challenge municipalities for future irregular recruitments.
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