NEWS & ANALYSIS

Reverse appointment of Cuban engineers – Leon Basson

DA MP says SA’s engineering council has more than 34 000 registered professionals

DA calls on Minister Sisulu to reverse appointment of Cuban engineers

28 April 2021

The DA calls on the Minister of Human Settlements, Water & Sanitation, Lindiwe Sisulu, to reverse the appointment of 24 Cuban engineers to assist the Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS) to solve problems related to water infrastructure.

This comes after the Engineering Council of South Africa (ECSA) has confirmed that international engineers working in South Africa are only allowed to carry out work if they apply for professional registration with ECSA.

Given that the jury is still out on whether the Cuban engineers meet the necessary legal requirements to work in South Africa, the Minister must do the right thing and send them home.

ECSA has 34 000 registered professionals, of which more than 14 800 are registered professional engineers. This confirms that South Africa has numerous skilled engineers who are able to the assist the DWS with its infrastructural challenges. Yet, the South African government chooses to pay millions of Rands in accommodating and paying Cuban engineers, at the expense of accredited, experienced and unemployed engineers already registered in South Africa.

Clearly Sisulu and her Department is out of touch with reality, and it is for this reason that the DA will also write to her to request the convening of a National Engineering Indaba.

South Africa’s deepening water infrastructure crisis requires leaders from government, business, labour and civil society to deliberate on a way forward to build capacity at both provincial and national level to address water challenges.

The DA believes that through meaningful public-private partnerships a solution can be found. And a National Engineering Indaba offers an opportunity to put outside our differences and work towards rebuilding our failing water infrastructure.

Issued by Leon Basson, DA Shadow Minister for Water and Sanitation, 28 April 2021