Jun 26, 2017 - Business Permit    No Comments

ALERT: Home Affairs services hard-hit due to ‘insufficient staff’

ALERT: Home Affairs services hard-hit due to ‘insufficient staff’
Cape Town – The Department of Home Affairs confirms that over 90% of DHA offices are closed on Saturday due to insufficient staff numbers, which Home Affairs says is not inline with the recent settlement agreement with the Unions.
This comes after the Federation of Unions of South Africa (Fedusa) and the Public Servants Association (PSA) threatened to down tools due to working conditions at Home Affairs.
The DHA issued a statement apologising to the public for the “inconvenience caused”, saying it is “disappointed by these developments as they are not in line with the spirit of the agreement and the resolutions of discussions that took place up to Friday, 23 June”.
The DHA has confirmed to Traveller24 the incapacity is not expected to affect passport control for those travelling internationally – but specifically front offices, facilitating ID, Passport and birth registrations as well as collections, including visas.
This comes ahead of one of our busiest periods in the year – the school winter holidays starting at the end of June.
Home Affairs Director-General Mkuseli Apleni says the dispute relates to ongoing issues within the department, also relating to front offices’ working hours implemented in 2015.
The unions were determined to register a strike if demands are not worked out “favourably for its
The strike planned for Monday 19 June was called off following the DHA’s withdrawal of measures to force its staff to work on Saturdays without paying them overtime, but offering them a specified timetable of time off in lieu instead.
It has taken months of negotiation to resolve issues ongoing issues within the department, relating to front offices weekend working hours implemented in 2015 and the restructuring of time off in lieu instead of paid overtime.
Following the DHA’s withdrawal of the “circular introducing the shift system” it now has 10 days to review the process.
The Department is appealing to the union leadership to prioritise resolving this matter urgently as agreed with the unions during negotiations. “The Public Service Commission, the unions and the Department believe quality service delivery to our people is of utmost importance in line with our values,” says the Department.
“We are hopeful this matter will be resolved amicably soon because the public deserves a better service from all of us,” adds the Department.

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