Deputy Minister of Public Enterprises Obed Bapela says plans are afoot to close down the department, following the announcement by President Cyril Ramaphosa early this year.
Ramaphosa announced during the State of the Nation Address that in the reconfiguration of government the Department of Public Enterprises will be scrapped and State-Owned Entities (SOEs) falling under it will go to line departments.
The announcement by Ramaphosa came after the ANC took a resolution at its national conference in Nasrec in December 2022 to do away with the department in order to create efficiency in the running of SOEs.
Bapela, who was appearing before the portfolio committee on public enterprises, confirmed to its members that plans were already in place how the process will be managed.
EFF MP Nqobile Mhlongo had raised the question of the scrapping of the department.
Bapela said they were still working on the finer details, but senior officials were engaged with all stakeholders involved in how it would be done. This was a technical process that would require a lot of work.
“Indeed, the president has made that announcement. We are honouring that announcement, Indeed, the Director-General and the team are engaging the officials to say this department is coming to an end. But the processes of who goes where, what happens to the officials and workers in the department, that matter is still being engaged.
“As you know, in the engagement, whatever is going to be a plan will also have to include the unions at that particular point in time. Whether people will be transferred to other departments is a process that is still ongoing,” said Bapela.
In his last Cabinet reshuffle in March, Ramaphosa said they will undertake a comprehensive reconfiguration of the national departments after the elections next year.
At its national conference, the ANC said the department of public enterprises must be done away with and each entity must go to its line department.
Bapela said that process will be completed before the elections and by the time there is a new Cabinet, this ministry will no longer be in place, but senior officials are finalising the modalities of this, he said.