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Parliament, Tuesday, 14 November 2017 – The Portfolio Committee on Public Works has welcomed the presentation on the Extended Public Works Programme (EPWP) from the Department of Public Works. The Committee is encouraged by the Department’s detailed report, which gave the levels of the work which includes the remote rural communities and informal settlements throughout the country.

The Committee noted that there are areas that need improvement, for example, some provinces are not increasing the number of people on the EPWP. This programme assists people all over South Africa, even those with no formal education, who would otherwise have no work, nor food on the table. The Committee has encouraged the Department to ensure that the number of people who benefit from the EPWP increases.

The Committee is encouraged that those who are employed by the EPWP perform their tasks very well in all provinces and where there are weaknesses the department is urged to attend to all those.

The Committee was also encouraged by the information from Statistics South Africa, which was provided by the Deputy Minister of Public Works, Mr Jeremy Cronin, that 12.5% of those who have been trained by the Public Works Department as part of the EPWP have been employed permanently in other areas. The Committee notes that 4.3 million South Africans are currently on the EPWP.

The Chairperson of the Committee, Mr Humphrey Mmemezi, shared that he has met several people from other countries within Africa who were highly appreciative of the programmes South Africa has, that assist the poor and unemployed, such as the EPWP and social grants. Due to the EPWP, many projects from other government departments have been achieved, such as the electrification programmes that include rural areas and informal settlements, construction of state-of-the-art schools in rural areas and the building of clinics for anti-retroviral treatment.

ISSUED BY PARLIAMENTARY COMMUNICATION SERVICES ON BEHALF OF COMMITTEE CHAIRPERSON, MR HUMPHREY MMEMEZI

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