Goverment staff in the Eastern Cape are a sickly bunch

Staff of the Department of Local Government in the Eastern Cape was absent from work for an equivalent of 14 years in 2011.

This shocking information was tabled in a report to the Portfolio Committee of Local Government and Traditional Affairs in the Bhisho Legislature last week.

A total of 5 125 sick days were taken between 1 January 2011 to 31 December 2011, costing the department R4, 926 million.

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Of further concern is that of the 3 329 posts available in the department only 1 593 were filled during the year, resulting in the department operating on a vacancy rate of 52 %.

With local government in crisis in this province it is unacceptable that the department has a high absenteeism rate which in turn delays crucial service delivery to communities.