Picture: Leon Nicholas.

Johannesburg - South Africa's Telkom SA said on Monday it urgently needs more cost cuts, including reducing its bloated workforce under its chief executive's turnaround plan.

Africa's largest landline service provider said in November it had already laid off 9 percent of its workforce and was looking to cut back on its managerial payroll.

“There is an urgent need for Telkom to address its cost base including its human capital requirements as it substantially and directly impacts the company's performance,” it said in a statement.

Chief Executive Sipho Maseko has already taken away perks such as year-end functions, bottled water and long-service awards from the workforce of nearly 21,000, and asked suppliers for discounts.

Maseko, who joined the government-controlled company nearly 10 months ago, is Telkom's sixth chief executive since 2005.

Telkom shares are up 2.7 percent at 33.08 rand at 10:50 SA time, after gaining 66 percent in 2013, compared with a 17.9 percent rise by Johannesburg's All-Share index. - Reuters