Public servants use overtime as self-enrichment scheme: Schlettw

22 Feb 2016 21:20pm
WINDHOEK, 22 FEB (NAMPA) – Public civil servants are not entitled to overtime but should rather prioritise to do their work within the eight-hour working day.
Minister of Finance Calle Schlettwein made the remarks during his ministry’s staff meeting here on Monday.
“Overtime is not an entitlement to improve your salary. It is applicable when time is constraint or an extra-ordinary workload beyond your control [is assigned to you].”
He explained that overtime is applicable when public office bearers are assigned to do work stretching beyond their normal working hours or tasks needing some input above their performance agreements.
“Overtime must be properly motivated in areas of essential services such as hospitals and agriculture; these are the areas where we approve overtime for it is not a self-enrichment scheme,” said a visibly irate Schlettwein, adding that employees should embrace the performance agreements and not see them as “punishment”.
“All targets within the performance agreement are achievable within the normal eight working hours a day and 40 working hours a week. If you cannot do that then it is under-performance and not necessarily being entitled to overtime.”
Schlettwein noted that institutions thrive on having hardworking people who are equally smart and who pull together for a common goal.
“It is very crucial to lead by example and to do better and deliver with fewer resources towards reaching certain goals that we have set to achieve.”
The finance minister also urged public servants to maintain a high level of integrity, accountability and reliability, to ensure that the reputation of the ministry as an institution entrusted with public funds remains intact.
“We are aware that our officials are bribeable and in return, service delivery is not efficient. If we cannot show that our systems are accountable, safe and sound then we are entering a dangerous and slippery slope that will be difficult to turn around,” he warned.
Earlier this year, Prime Minister Saara Kuugongelwa-Amadhila said public servants should restrain themselves from claiming overtime.
“If you know that you were behind because you skipped out of the office to go to town and now you cannot finish your work before 17h00, then stay until 19h00 and do what you were supposed to do. Don’t ask now for overtime because you were not able to finish your work before knock-off time,” she stated.