Almost one third of artisans, technicians and engineers at Eskom are approaching retirement, Public Enterprises Minister Malusi Gigaba said in Durban on Monday.
To avert the approaching skills crisis, the state utility had invested R780 million in training over the last financial year, Gigaba said during a session with black professionals organised by Durban Invest.
“They have established 24 training centres while there are 244 on-job training sites. Presently 5225 learners are registered, of which 3780 are in engineering and technical skills.”
He said 5000 more young people would be put into training in the near future.
The government’s nuclear energy build programme suggested Eskom and its suppliers would require 3000 scientists and engineers. It would also require 24,000 artisans.
Gigaba said his department would pay “serious attention” to transformation.
“Many companies have paid lip-service to the transformation legislation, implementing it in a half-hearted manner, or selectively, or choosing to ignore it.
“Companies that are resisting investing in transformation are not just performing a social injustice, but are hindering the development of the economy as a whole,” Gigaba said.
State-owned companies needed to be exemplary where transformation was concerned.
“If state-owned companies themselves do not comply, it will not inspire the private sector to transform.” – Sapa