The Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality’s staff recruitment programme and the significant number of vacancies in critical posts came under fire at a safety and security committee meeting yesterday, where the ANC called for urgent action to fill the posts.
ANC councillor Andile Mfunda said the time for rhetoric was over and called on mayor Athol Trollip to act quickly to provide the people of the Bay with employment.
“We are worried because these things of filling critical vacancies take too long.
“If a post is vacant and is budgeted for why can’t we fill that position?
“Remember that you promised the people of the metro during the elections that these positions would be filled,” Mfunda said.
The ANC’s Xola Tyali criticised the metro’s decision to hire only two firefighters for the city in the wake of the fires that had raged through the Garden Route and several parts of the Bay earlier this year.
“When we talk about critical vacancies, I find it strange that there’s only two that you plan on employing. There are 135 firefighters needed here so things can run smoothly. If we’re talking about service delivery, we’re talking about those people,” Tyali said.
In response, safety and security directorate acting executive director Shane Brown said the department was compiling a huge recruitment notification from the top (positions) down.
“From director right through to cleaner, to firefighter, that recruitment notice is what is in process right now,” Brown said.
Metro police chief Yolanda Faro said her department had recently started a 24-hour shift system with its allocation of 109 metro officers, which meant there were between five and six officers per area, which was few. “We really need to look at getting more staff for the metro police because the demand outweighs the staff.
“Our staff has had to do foot patrols in Helenvale and Soweto-on-Sea, however, I do need to send my staff on patrol in numbers,” Faro said.
The total number of vacancies that exist within the safety and security directorate could not be established yesterday.