The Department of Public Works briefed the Portfolio Committee on Public Works on the performance of the Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP) on 12 April 2016. EPWP is a government initiative that aims to create work opportunities in four sectors, namely, Infrastructure; Non-State; Environment and Culture; and Social. It is a nationwide programme covering all spheres of government and state-owned enterprises.
EPWP projects employ workers on a temporary or on-going basis either by government, by contractors, or by other non-governmental organisations. The Department also noted that while the EPWP provides an important avenue for labour absorption and income transfers to poor households in the short to medium-term, it was not designed as a policy instrument to address the structural nature of the unemployment crisis. One full time equivalent job is equal to 230 person-days (unit of measurement based on an ideal amount of work done by one person in one working day of work).
The Department reported the following for the period 1 April 2015 – 16 March 2016:
541 776 work opportunities reported against the annual target of 1 127 186 (48% achievement)
160 752 full time equivalent jobs created against the set target of 450 462 (36% achievement)
Eastern Cape province created the most (9 962) full time equivalent jobs in the infrastructure sector, i.e. 22% of total work opportunities
KZN created the most full time equivalent jobs in the Environment and Culture sector, i.e. 36% of total work opportunities
The reason for general poor full time equivalent job performance is attributed to the shorter duration of work opportunities
See the full meeting report here and see infographic below for more on how the EPWP performed:
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