The Portfolio Committee on Public Service and Administration (PSA) welcomed the signing of the wage agreement between government as the employer and organised labour unions.
The agreement is as follows "The employer will pay a once-off pensionable salary adjustment of at least 1.5% to all employees employed in the public service on 1 April 2021, who do not receive a pensionable increase derived from pay progression [in other words, a salary increase linked to years of service] in respect of the applicable performance cycle, payable to them in terms of any Public Service Coordinating Bargaining Council or Sectoral Agreements regulating pay progression, including employees on the maximum notch of their salary levels."
This wage agreement derived from sacrifices, compromised and deeper understanding of selfless leaders from both government and organised labour unions who have thought thoroughly about our ailing economic conditions negatively impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.
Although the 1.5% may have differing views, the committee is pleased that government has demonstrated itself as a caring employer in this pandemic wherein all public servants have never experienced salary cuts and retrenchment during this pandemic. Therefore, this wage agreement should be welcomed as a result of a struggling economy. The committee is wary of the rising costs of living during this pandemic.
The committee would like to send word of appreciation to government, more specifically the leader of the government delegation in the negotiation, the Minister of the Department of Public Service and Administration, Mr Senzo Mchunu, for ensuring negotiations are based on fairness and transparency in terms of the financial position the country finds itself in, juggling too many government priorities, and at the same time fighting to save lives from the coronavirus pandemic.