Public Protector and Public Service Commission meet to strengthen relations
Public Protector Adv Thuli Madonsela and the Chairperson of the Public Service Commission (PSC) Dr Ralph Mgijima met on Thursday, September 23, 2010 to discuss the overlapping mandates of the two institutions, cooperation and areas of improvement.
Specifically, the purpose of the meeting between the two heads of constitutional institutions supporting democracy was to review an eight-year-old Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that has been regulating their relations.
The MOU, which is expected to be signed by the end of October 2010, will cover areas such as collaboration on investigations, referrals, sharing of expertise, monitoring, evaluation and review, training and sharing of resources, among other things.
Already the Public Protector and the PSC are preparing to embark on a joint special investigation into the recent public sector strike, with a view to evaluate the impact of the strike on service delivery issues particularly essential services. The investigation will also look into what government could have done differently for future reference.
“The focus will be to look at the impact of the strike on health and education. The investigation will look primarily at balancing the rights of public servants with the rights to life and education,” said the Public Protector, adding that the South African Human Rights Commission will be roped-in on the investigation to look into human rights implications.
Dr Mgijima said the PSC saw the MOU as a key move in the right direction. “We do not view this MOU as something that we sign and the put away but a dynamic document,” he said.
The meeting also discussed the participation of the PSC in the upcoming Public Protector Commonwealth Good Governance Conference, which will form part of activities characterizing the inaugural Public Protector Good Governance Week in mid October.
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