MEC Nandi Mayathula-Khoza appeared to be sitting on her hands while she was also sitting on jobs which could benefit young professionals, said DA. Picture: Simone Kley/Independent Media

Johannesburg - The Gauteng social development department has failed to fill vacancies within the department for two consecutive quarters, the Democratic Alliance said on Sunday. 

"The department’s first and second quarterly reports show a clear lack of political will to fill these vacancies," DA Gauteng MPL Refiloe Nt’sekhe said.

"MEC Nandi Mayathula-Khoza appeared to be sitting on her hands while she was also sitting on jobs which could benefit young professionals. She was at the helm of this department, yet could not seem to get the basics in order. Her piecemeal approach to rolling out jobs would never solve the unemployment crisis.

"It is alarming that MEC Mayathula-Khoza has had the opportunity for over six months to ensure that various vacancies within her department are filled. There are far too many of our young graduates in Gauteng yearning to take up employment opportunities and gain the necessary on-the-job skills," Nt’sekhe said.

In terms of critical occupations, of the 14 occupational therapist posts, her department only managed to fill one vacancy resulting in a vacancy rate of 92.8 percent. There was an 82 percent vacancy rate for psychologists, as the department could not fill all 11 posts during the quarter under review. Social work and related professionals had a vacancy rate of 10 percent.

Mayathula-Khoza should ensure that these posts were advertised as a matter of urgency and afford these opportunities to the many young people who felt locked out of the economy.

"The DA’s vision of a new beginning for Gauteng and the country is centred around a radical expansion of employment opportunities for the many who are left behind and struggling to put food on the table.

"It is high time that these vacancies are filled as they have been budgeted for. The DA will submit questions to MEC Mayathula-Khoza to ascertain why her department has been filling vacancies at such a sluggish rate," Nt’sekhe said.

African News Agency/ANA