Security guards worried by City of Joburg's insourcing programme delays

Hopeful beneficiaries of the City of Joburg's insourcing of security guards programme say they are feeling frustrated by the constant delays in their start dates as they prepare to be full-time employees of the City. 

The beneficiaries were initially meant to start on July 1. This was deferred to October 1 because of glitches in the verification processes. The finalisation of the verification process will see the conclusion of the second phase of the insourcing of the City's security force, which will see over 3 700 security guards benefiting from the programme. 

A frustrated 48-year old, who wanted to remain anonymous, told News24 he is among the hopeful beneficiaries expected to start in October. He said when the insourcing programme was announced in 2017 he was excited but has now lost interest because of the delays. 

"For now I cannot say I am happy because there is no progress in the programme. Last year I was happy because I realised that my lifestyle would change when I am officially insourced. They [City] keep promising and promising…," the father of two said. 

READ MORE: Mashaba welcomes over 900 security guards as insourcing programme expands

The man, who has been a security guard for almost 20 years said he was worried that he was getting too old, with just 12 years before pension age and had lots of plans once the City employs him. 

"I don't have a house, so the first thing I will start with is getting myself a place stay so that my children will also start living a good life," he added. 

He said they were not asking for much but just a clear indication of when they would officially start working.

He feared that come October 1, there would be another postponement. 

The City has confirmed there were delays in the effective date of employment for the beneficiaries of the second phase. 

The first phase was concluded in May, seeing around 2 700 guards being insourced by the City. 

The second phase will see security officials being insourced into various municipal entities which include City Power, Joburg Water, amongst others and affects around 1 500 people.  

"The multiparty administration, led by executive mayor [Herman] Mashaba, maintains its commitment to conducting all its affairs in a lawful manner and, therefore, it was necessary that the Municipal Entities finalise all the statutory and policy processes necessary for them to take on the additional staff in compliance with the law and policy prescripts.

"These include the vetting of potential beneficiaries, with the assistance of SAPS. Unfortunately, we have faced multiple delays and lax cooperation from SAPS and other intergovernmental agencies in this respect – with the unfortunate effect being the delay," said the City's spokesperson Sabelo Chalufu.

Chalufu said the budget for the programme was ready and available and part of it had already been used for the benefit of the beneficiaries of Phase 1. 

He added that the City was unfortunately not in a position to divulge the details of the budgeted allocation. 

"The City is very proud of the fact that the security officials who have already been insourced are receiving a basic salary of +/- R7 400, excluding benefits such as a pension fund, medical aid and funeral cover. These are benefits they previously never had, on top of a basic salary they never earned," he said. 

Chalufu said the City was confident the process would be concluded by October 1.