Corruption is one of the elements plaguing the public sector and decelerating service delivery. Government departments and public servants are meant to be seen as foot-soldiers of delivery but are more susceptible to corruption. NEHAWU as a union that is located in the public service takes responsibility to fight against corruption. In light of this all organisations that are part of the ANC-led Alliance must also take action towards meaningful contribution in this fight.
Since 2006, NEHAWU has embarked on a Public Service Delivery Campaign, which arose as a response to the restructuring of public service through the private sector. Private-Public-Partnerships at the level of national and provincial governments were being introduced by outsourcing certain functions such as cleaning, catering within publicly run institutions that were normally undertaken by certain government departments.These functions used to be contracted to private service providers on the basis that they were not essential. This included the incorporation of major public entities, in which all key functions of institutions such as prisons and hospitals would be given to a private sector company to manage and operate over a period of time. Normally, this is justified on a claim that private companies are efficient compared to the public service. From our experiences, we know that it is not true.
The public health sector remains the most affected by PPPs. As members of the union, we know that transformation through PPPs can never be undertaken successfully. Instead of fostering transformation, the PPPs are creating major problems through casualisation and retrenchments, which goes against the government’s commitment to create decent jobs.
So, whilst we support government’s determination to accelerate service delivery, we will fight against attempts to do so through the use of PPPs. Since many of our members are in public service, the union is better placed to help mobilise them into action for rapid implementation of programmes.
When we campaigned in support of the ANC during the 2009 elections, we explained that the ANC government is set out to build an effective developmental state. The key part in achieving this is through a campaign to step up our fight against corruption in the public service. This will also extend to rooting out corrupt elements amongst our own membership, and fighting against the tendency by some to use their membership to our union to participate in corrupt practices believing that the union will defend them regardless of circumstances. NEHAWU is opposed to corruption and expects all its cadres to take a principle stance in exposing and rooting out corrupt individuals both in the public service and in our union. CORRUPTIONEVERYWHERE
FIGHTING CORRUPTION EVERYWHERE
What has been promised to our people in the fight against corruption must be implemented and NEHAWU has committed itself to be in the frontline of this principled fight. The current service delivery protests that are happening in many of our communities are not merely out of a frustration with poor service delivery at a local level, but also at provincial and national levels. As a progressive union, we cannot stand by when people are turned away at clinics and denied access to medicines because of theft and corrupt practices. Nor can we fold our hands when people are forced to stand in long queues whilst trying to obtain birth certificates and identity documents only to be turned away with nothing at the end of the day. These documents are even more important for the poor for purposes of accessing grants and other services. We cannot stand by when we should be making sure that our elderly have access to their pensions, the disabled and children have access to their disability and child support grants. We cannot stand by when we are aware that some of the workers are using government resources, such as motor vehicles, telephones for their own personal purposes.
NEHAWU has consistently argued that there was a link between poor service delivery and poor working conditions in which many public service workers find them. As a union, we are aware that some of the physical conditions under which workers have to work, create a unpleasant working experience.
As a union, we are aware that the salaries and conditions of service of many of our members need to be improved. But, as we fight for better conditions of service, it is still our responsibility to ensure the efficient delivery of the services which the ANC government has promised.
Since 2009, more money has been made available to address the bad situations facing poor communities.We also expect all our shop-stewards to take responsibility including giving advice and education to those members who are involved in corrupt and other activities that undermine the delivery of services to our people.
So, let all NEHAWU members stand up and be counted in taking responsibility in the interest of our people to improve the quality of service delivery and fighting against corruption. We need to advance the interests of our union, our members, our movement and our national democratic revolution.
As a union we expect our members to stand up and be counted in the fight against corruption, theft and other bad practices in the public service!!.