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Kaizer Nyatsumba

The Government and Law-Enforcement Agencies Should Protect Business from Local Thugs

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The new tendency of pseudo-entrepreneurs demanding a stake in public tenders won by companies poses a serious threat to the country and its economy, argues Kaizer Nyatsumba.

A society’s descent into lawlessness does not happen overnight. It takes place over a number of months and years, often indirectly encouraged by authorities’ failure to take decisive, punitive action against those committing various criminal acts. Inevitably, a society whose leaders tolerate – or conveniently turn a blind eye to – any form of criminality or malfeasance deteriorates over time into a state of utter anarchy.

South Africa is not there yet, but it could easily get there if the situation is not arrested speedily.

Until recently, far too many people in this country got away with so much. As has become evident from the various commissions of enquiry currently taking place in the country, many among our political leaders and those connected or close to them have committed many vile deeds with absolute impunity. They have looted with gay abandon and lived well beyond their legal means. They have turned public office and entities into their own private fiefdoms and milked them dry.

Among the consequences, as we have witnessed in recent days, has been the rolling load shedding that has been visited upon us by Eskom and firmly consigned us to the status of a backward, third-world country. However, perhaps the most insidious consequence of the general criminality by some political mandarins has been the unwitting setting, for the ordinary citizen, of an example that it is fine – if not commendable – to cut corners, to steal and generally to break the law. After all, if putative leaders can shamelessly engage in such activities and get away with it, then, the logic will go, it must similarly be fine for ordinary citizens to do the same.

South Africa desperately needs an urgent, sustained crackdown on all forms of crime, from the most heinous to the apparently benign. That crackdown should focus as much on those in the private sector and ordinary individuals, as it should on those in the private sector. We need a sustained effort aimed at inculcating a new culture of zero tolerance for crime.

While we welcome the good work done by the various commissions of enquiry established by President Cyril Ramaphosa, we wait with bated breath to see if widespread arrests, prosecutions and convictions – especially of prominent, high-profile individuals – will follow suit. Were that to happen consistently, it would go a long way towards sending a powerful message to all and sundry not only that corruption will not be tolerated during the era of “a new dawn”, such as it is, but also that the commission of crime will inevitably lead to dire consequences for those involved.

Precisely because of the kind of example that has been set by South Africa’s political leaders and some of their reckless pronouncements on the economy, in recent years the business community has been on the receiving end of a sustained campaign to harass and intimidate it. A new breed of opportunists – some of whom call themselves entrepreneurs – has sprung up in different parts of the country to target the business community.

Routinely, they target various companies that have won tenders from the public sector and demand 30% sub-contracting of the said business to them. They unleash violence to take over construction sites and to prevent any work from taking place, unless the companies thus victimised yielded to their vile blackmail. Often, this is in addition to members of the local communities demanding to be prioritised for employment on those projects, even if they may not have the requisite skill, experience or expertise.

This terrible culture is fast spreading to different parts of the country, in the process posing a serious threat to investment. Some companies are known to have packed up their bags and walked away from tenders that they had won, while others have even reconsidered their investments in South Africa – at a time when the country desperately requires investment to grow the economy and create jobs.

Among the companies that have been terribly affected by this scourge of lawlessness have been members of employer associations affiliated to the Steel and Engineering Industries Federation of Southern Africa (SEIFSA). Many of them have laid charges against those involved in such acts of criminality and even obtained court interdicts, all to no avail. Others, on their own or in partnership with SEIFSA, have registered their concerns with the various provincial governments and some national Cabinet Ministers.

Regrettably, none of these efforts has so far yielded positive results. Precisely because of the aforementioned culture of impunity and the general inefficiency of our police service, the thugs – who often appear to be politically connected – have continued to harass, victimize and generally terrorize the business community. In a country in which “demand” is possibly the most popular word, where everybody – including students, local communities and workers – demands something from somebody else, often the Government, these pseudo-entrepreneurs have also continued to demand, shamelessly, 30% of the value of won business opportunities.

We are not talking here about people who have sought to negotiate black economic empowerment partnerships with companies winning public tenders, or who could add some value to the companies thus cornered. Instead, these are men and women who are eager to muscle in because they can – and know that there is a high probability (if not certainty) that they will get away with it.

We in the metals and engineering sector join other sectors of the economy to call on government and the country’s law-enforcement agencies to move swiftly to bring an end to these horrible acts of intimidation, violence and economic sabotage. We fully support and champion transformation, but will have no truck with economic terrorism.

Although we have previously raised our concerns on this matter in meetings with the relevant stakeholders, including with President Ramaphosa and his Ministers during the last CEO Initiative gathering at the Union Buildings in September last year, we have not yet witnessed any change for the better. If anything, we have seen these acts of criminality spreading to other parts of the country and affecting even more of our members.

In the interest not only of our sector or the business community, but also of South Africa itself, we call on President Ramaphosa and all tiers of government to condemn this new tendency equivocally and to urge compatriots to desist therefrom, and we call on the SAPS and other law-enforcement agencies to do their work.

Kaizer M. Nyatsumba is the Chief Executive Officer of the Steel and Engineering Industries Federation of Southern Africa (SEIFSA).

Health and Safety Representative Training

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The workshop outlines the rights and duties of health and safety representatives in terms of the Occupational Health and Safety Act, 85 of 1993. On completion of this one day workshop delegates will have a thorough knowledge and understanding of their functions and responsibilities when identifying hazards and risks at the workplace, conducting regular inspections, assisting management with incident investigations and attending health and safety committee meetings.

The workshop will cover

  • The purpose and scope of the Occupational Health and Safety Act
  • The legal responsibilities of employers and employees in terms of the Act
  • The importance of a health and safety policy
  • Functions of health and safety representatives
  • Functions of health and safety committees
  • How to conduct a workplace inspection
  • How to hold effective health and safety committee meetings

Who should attend?

  • Health and Safety Representatives
  • Shop stewards
  • Other interested employees
  • Supervisors, Team Leaders, Managers

Legal Liability Training

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This course is designed to assist organizations to avoid penalties as a result of non-compliance. The workshop covers all SHEQ related legislation, with a focus on legal requirements and consequences for non-compliance. Case studies and industry specific scenarios are used to illustrate the extent to which various role players are liable.

The workshop will cover

  • Types of liability
  • An overview of SHEQ legislation
  • Quality standards and legal requirements
  • Legal obligations of various role players
  • Consequences of non-compliance

Who should attend?

  • Directors, Executives and Senior Managers
  • HR Practitioners
  • Supervisors
  • Employee representatives

COIDA Amendment Bill

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The workshop outlines management’s obligations in terms of the Compensation for Occupational Injuries and Diseases Act. At the end of the workshop, delegates will have a sound knowledge and understanding of what the legal requirements are regarding employer and employee obligations, the right to compensation, claim procedures and independent contractors in terms of the Act.

The workshop will cover

The purpose and scope of COID Act

How does negligence affect compensation?

The Employer and employee obligations in terms of the COID Act

Claim procedures for occupational injuries and diseases

Occupational diseases and claims

What about contractors and their employees?

Case Studies: Court decisions involving compensation

Who should attend?

  • Supervisors
  • Health and Safety Representatives
  • Health and Safety Managers
  • Safety Officers

Health Practitioners

16.4 appointees

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Non-compliance with SHE legislation is the reason why employers fear any law enforcement drives such as the DoL’s annual Safety Blitz. One of the main duties of an employer is to ensure that ALL legislative requirements are complied with, or otherwise face the consequences thereof.

The workshop will cover

  • Duties of the CEO
    • Requirements regarding 16.2 Assignees
    • Duties of employers
    • Establishing an effective Health and Safety Structure
    • Measurement & Monitoring of HS compliance
    • Evaluation of HS performance

The workshop will cover the following legislation:

  • OHS Act 85 of 1993
    • COID Act 130 of 1993
    • Environmental legislation
    • Municipal by laws

Business Improvement Workshop

By | HCSD Training Catalogue | No Comments

This facilitated “Action Learning” workshop uses highly-innovative business initiatives in conjunction with powerful improvement material. Its goal is to illustrate the importance of improvement measures and clear strategies for implementing continuous improvement and breakthrough financial priorities.

The process draws from a wealth of material related to all styles of leadership / management styles. The power of the process however is in its practical nature and there is direct focus on “making more money” in all businesses with specific application to the Manufacturing Sector.

The workshop will cover

  • Business orientation
  • Supply chain profitability optimization (practical)
  • Voice of the customer, process and supplier
  • The 6 strategic business questions to optimise profitability
  • Productivity measurements and benchmarks
  • Quality cost focus
  • Customised training
  • “Employee ownership” (The 40% productivity gap in SA)
  • Business dashboards and management control tools
  • The “Super 7” concept of business management
  • Problem solving
  • Fast tracking improvement

Who should attend?

  • Executives
  • Senior Managers
  • Managing Directors
  • Managers and those directly involved with cost reduction and “making more money”

Government Incentives and Import and Export Foreign exchange

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At this event experts will look at an overview of Government Cash Investment Incentives available to manufacturers as well as opportunities for importers and exporters in terms of foreign exchange. The workshop will benefit companies looking at additional spend in terms of their manufacturing facilities, as well as any exposure to currency volatility.

The workshop will cover

  • Government incentives for manufacturing companies;
  • How incentives can be accessed;
  • Assistance provided through the process; and
  • Foreign exchange opportunities.

Who should attend?

  • Entrepreneurs
  • SMMEs
  • Managing Directors
  • Financial Directors
  • Senior Managers

Those directly involved with applications for government incentives and foreign exchange transactions.

The dti Incentive Schemes

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The workshop will look at the different incentives schemes available from the dti to companies in the metals and engineering industries

Who should attend?

  • Executives
  • Senior Managers
  • Managing Directors
  • Chief Financial Officers
  • Managers
  • Entrepreneurs and those directly involved with applications for government incentives
The workshop will cover
  • Automotive Investment Scheme(AIS)
  • Capital Projects Feasibility Programme
  • Critical Infrastructure Programme (CIP)
  • Manufacturing Competitiveness Enhancement Programme (MCEP)
  • People-Carrier Automotive Incentive Scheme (P-AIS)
  • Section 12I Tax Allowance Incentive (12I)
  • Support Programme for Industrial Innovation (SPII)
  • Export Marketing Investment Assistance (EMIA)

Theory and Calculation of Contract Price Adjustment

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The interest in price indices and the importance of these indices has grown rapidly over the past couple of decades.A sound practical knowledge of indices has therefore become essential for business in the tender and contracts environment.

The Theory and Calculation of Contract Price Adjustment Workshop provides a systematic explanation of the full range of indices used in Contract Price Adjustment, practical application of indices and formulas and how to derive the most value from the practice.

In this workshop you will learn how to analyse and maintain:

  • Cost increases in your business
  • Optimal cost recovery and management
  • Sustaining profit margins through the use of the SEIFSA – Price and Index Pages (PIPS)
  • Opportunities for cost reduction

Who should attend?

  • All people involved in contract negotiations and pricing
  • Procurement Managers
  • Contract Managers
  • Buyers
  • Marketing and sales teams
  • Suppliers to government, parastatals and large corporate companies

The workshop will cover

Session 1

Schematic overview of the theory and calculation of contract price adjustment.
Recovery of cost increases.
A detailed guide to the SEIFSA Price and Index Pages.
The components of price adjustment formulas.

Session 2

The use of price adjustment formulas.
Formula components.
Fixed portions in contracts.
The construction of price adjustment formulas.
Practical exercise.

Included in the fees

  • Course material
  • Certificate of attendance
  • Refreshments


Labour/union/employee Representative Training

By | HCSD Training Catalogue | No Comments

This brand new one-day workshop introduces the nominated Labour Representative Skills Development Facilitator (SDF) to the skills development landscape – in order to understand the individual and group roles and responsibilities.

This practical workshop covers all the Department of Higher Education and Training legislative and Merseta requirements that the Labour Representative SDF must know and understand in order to participate effectively. Key outcomes include understanding the role of the training committee as well as managing effective consultation on all skills development related matters.

Attendance is essential for the appointed Labour Representative Skills Development Facilitator (SDF) nominated through the Training Committee. The workshop will also be valuable to any employee representatives nominated to serve on their company’s training committee particularly in the changing skills development environment.

The workshop will cover

  • The skills development legislation
  • The Merseta
  • The Skills Development Facilitator
  • The Labour Representative Skills Development Facilitator (SDF)
  • The levy grant amendments
  • The skills planning process
  • The training committee
  • A guide to consultation
  • Introduction to the Seta Management System (SMS)