southafricalogoThe Star reports that a staggering number of vacancies in public service remained unfilled despite unemployment soaring to a scary 29%.  

A whopping 123,843 vacancies exist in national and provincial departments, newly released official data revealed.  This amounted to a 9.34% vacancy rate in a sector with 1,169,580 filled posts.  The data released by Minister of Public Service and Administration Senzo Mchunu showed that education, health and social development departments had the highest number of vacancies.  A total of 54,464 vacancies were in the education departments across the nine provinces, with the Eastern Cape department leading the pack.  Nearly 37,000 vacancies existed in public health across the nine provinces, with 7,895 in Gauteng.  Leon Amos Schreiber, DA MP who had asked Mchunu about the vacancies, said:  “The vacancy rate (nationwide) is actually increasing.  Even from late 2017 the vacancy rate was already a concern for the Public Service Commission (PSC), when it was standing around 7%.  Now we’re very close to 10% and there are 123,000 posts that are not filled.”  Mchunu’s spokesperson, Vukani Mbhele, suggested that there was nothing alarming about the vacancy rate:  “It should be noted that the vacancy rate is not static, rather it is dynamic due to the fact that the percentage changes continuously, impacted by general turnover as employees exit the public service for a variety of reasons while others are entering.”

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