Status of Vacancies within the Department of Foreign Affairs

NATIONAL ASSEMBLY

FOR ORAL REPLY

QUESTION NO: 7 (WRITTEN QUESTION 1240)

PUBLISHED IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NO 24 OF 15 AUGUST 2005

MR CW LOWE (DA) TO ASK THE MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS:

1. Whether any posts within her Department, which were vacant as at 1 January 2004, remained vacant because of lack of suitably qualified or skilled applicants; if so, (a) how many posts, (b)what specified qualifications or skills are required to fill the posts and (c) for what period has each post been vacant;

2. Whether any special steps have been taken to recruit suitably qualified or skilled applicants; if not, why not; if so, (a) what specified steps and (b) with what results;

3. Whether the length of time for which each post has been vacant has had any negative effect on service delivery by her Department; if not, what factors were taken into consideration in reaching this conclusion; if so, what negative effects have been experienced?

REPLY:

(1) There were no posts that remained vacant as at 01 January 2004 because of lack of suitably qualified or skilled candidates.

(a) Not applicable
(b) Not applicable
(c) Not applicable

(2) The Department has taken special steps to recruit suitably qualified and skilled applicants.

(a) Specific steps taken

The Department officials have made presentations to institutions of higher learning on the work of the Department and encouraged learners to apply for positions.

The Department also liaises with organisations that represent the interests of designated groups, specifically women and people with disabilities.

(b) Results

The special steps have yielded positive results in that the quality of the new people has been excellent and more women were appointed.

With regard to people with disabilities, the Department was able to employ two individuals in that recruitment cycle.

(3) (a) Length of time of vacancies on service delivery

The Department has not measured the impact of vacant posts on its work. It is willing to accept that such vacancies may have had a negative impact on its functioning.

(b) Effects experienced

The Department has not been in a position to achieve some of its objectives. Employees in some of the areas have had to deal with increased workload.

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2003 Department of Foreign Affairs, Republic of South Africa