Tebogo Msimanga |
Solidarity says it sent a list of more than 120 competent and willing engineers to the Minister of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation Lindiwe Sisulu on Friday, 23 April 2021. This follows after the Minister welcomed the arrival of 24 Cuban engineers earlier this week, to address the water crisis within South Africa. It is reported that Cuban engineers will cost South African taxpayers R65 million.
According to Solidarity, these local engineers offer more expertise at a lower cost than the import of Cuban engineers suggest.
Solidarity Chief Executive Officer Dr Dirk Hermann said “We have reached out to the Minister with a list of some of the country’s most experienced and knowledgeable specialists in engineering, some of whom retain masters and doctoral degrees and others who have up to 42 years of experience. They are ready and willing to immediately start with work.There is simply no excuse not to use our own intellectual and practical resources.”
Solidarity also argues that it is unjustified to import foreign workers in the midst of an unemployment crisis, in which South Africa’s official unemployment rate is currently at almost 33%, when even better options are available locally.
According to Solidarity, the government has a very bad history regarding the squandering and misappropriation of tax money, and it makes matters worse when the government deliberately spends taxes on foreign employees, with dubious expertise.
“Taxpayers are already fed up with almost daily seeing and hearing how their taxes are being wasted. The Minister’s decision is unacceptable and cannot ignored. Explain to us, them and the taxpayer why local is no longer good enough,” Hermann concluded.