The South African government is strengthening the “professionalisation of the public service”, President Cyril Ramaphosa has said.
Testifying before the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture on Wednesday, Ramaphosa said he had introduced several measures to overcome corruption in the country.
“One of the critical projects currently underway to strengthen the state involves the professionalisation of the public service,” Ramaphosa said.
He added: “This aims to ensure that the public service is shorn of political partisanship and that the most qualified individuals enter its ranks.”
Changing the way in which the Cabinet functions and strengthening institutions that had been “captured”, starting with changes in the leadership of some of these institutions, were some of these measures, he said
Other measures undertaken by his government targeted ending state capture, rebuilding damaged institutions and fostering a culture of ethical public service and accountability, he said.
These measures also included changing the way in which state-owned enterprises were managed and overseen by the government as a shareholder, and making necessary policy decisions to address shortcomings and reinforce oversight, Ramaphosa said.
He said his government had also prioritised rebuilding and restoring law enforcement agencies that were deliberately weakened to limit their ability to act against those involved in corruption and state capture.
“I therefore decided that the appointment of the new National Director of Public Prosecutions should be undertaken through a public and transparent process,” the president said.
The commission is probing allegations of high-level corruption during the tenure of Ramaphosa’s predecessor, Jacob Zuma who is accused of having allowed his cronies to take charge of the running of state institutions.
Ramaphosa’s hearing continues on Thursday.