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Apr 17 2013 11:12PM
Zille fails race test
Western Cape Premier Helen Zille. Picture: Gallo Images
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Siyabonga Mkhwanazi

Western Cape Premier Helen Zille launched a pre-emptive attack on the employment equity figures set to be released today which our sources say reveal her province had regressed with white males dominating in the top jobs category.

She said her administration was meeting equity targets and questioned the statistics before they were announced. She also questioned last year’s findings of the Commission of Employment Equity that slammed the Western Cape as the least transformed of provinces.

The figures relate to employment equity in the public and private sector and reveal the province is going backwards in terms of race and gender equity instead of transforming to undo the imbalances of colonialism and apartheid.

Zille told journalists on Wednesday her government was meeting the targets and that the commission had released its report a month before provinces submitted their figures.

Our sources have revealed Zille’s administration had regressed further and scored even worse in just about every sector, especially within the Western Cape civil service.

Blacks still occupy the lowest paying jobs among farm workers, fishing, insurance and the state, the source said.

The premier told journalists on the eve of the release the transformation report on her administration was not accurate last year.

Labour Minister Mildred Oliphant is today expected to release the report in Johannesburg. The commission slammed the Western Cape last year for lagging behind in meeting employment equity targets.

In the 2011-2012 financial year, men aged 15 to 65 scored 54.6% against women (45.4%), as the most economically active population (EAP).

Of the 54.6%, 40.3% were African male; 5.9% coloured male; Indian male 1.8% and 6.6% for white male.

Regarding EAP by race and gender per province, Africans were in the majority in eight provinces, except for the Western Cape, where the Coloured males and females scored 27.5% and 25%, respectively.

In the workplace, males occupied 80.9% of top management positions, against females’ 19.1%.

Of the males’ 80.9%, whites occupied 65.4% followed by Africans at 18.5%; Indians at 7.5%; coloured 4.8% and foreign nationals at 3.9%.

Zille said while the commission was going to release its report today she believed the 2012 report was flawed.

She said the commission’s report contradicted statistics released by the Public Service Commission that her office was the most representative in all provinces.

Zille said it ignored the law by turning racial targets into racial quotas making race the sole criterion of employment and this was against the Constitution.

She further claimed the report needed to consider certain aspects of its methodology.

This included a pool of suitably qualified people that an employer may choose from for a position. These people would have a degree and five years experience.

She said the fact that 1.7% of black people had a degree and 2.1% coloureds had the same qualifications very few of them would potentially qualify to be senior management in the provincial government.

“So, if we apply the law as it stands, our targets for the senior management service of the Western Cape government (which is a mere 75 people out of 80 000 employees) would be 16.8% black, 20.7% coloured, 2.9% Indian and 59.4% white,” said the premier.

Zille said 67.2% of people in the top salary bracket were black people.

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