National Department of Public Works Recalls Retired Engineers

By bronwynnewman, 17 March, 2011

The National Minister of Public Works, Ms Gwen Mahlangu-Nkabinde has launched a campaign to recall retired built environment engineers and artisans.


The campaign to get these retired professionals back into the public world of work has been prompted by the pressing need to provide practical skills and training to a growing number of trained but as yet unqualified engineers and



“We always hear talk of scarce skills in the country as the reason for outsourcing most of the construction projects commissioned by Government, to large multinational corporations. Now we want to test this notion of scarcity.

“I am of the opinion that within the broader community of this country there is capacity, ability and willingness to handle successfully most of these services that are usually outsourced,” the Minister said.


The Department is in the process of reopening its workshops that have been closed for some time, which were established to house skilled workers who would respond speedily and render services that fall under the ambit of the

department to communities. The closure of the workshops meant unemployment for many skilled individuals. It also meant a loss of skills that are necessary to the development of our country.


The call by the Minister is for qualified engineers or artisans with experience in the construction and/ or built environment to submit their CV’s to the National Department of Public Works.


The aim of the exercise is to create a database of engineers and artisans so that they can be utilized in assisting the Department to deliver on its infrastructure mandate, job creation and contribute to sustainable skills pipeline into the future.


The unqualified artisans will be trained as apprentices in the Departmental workshops, with the ultimate aim of having these youths successfully pass a trade test in order to become qualified artisans The Minister’s objective for this programme is address the artisan shortage in South Africa. It has been found that the average current age of an artisan is 55 years and the Minister of Higher Education has indicated that 70,000 artisans have to be trained within the next 5 years.


Interested engineers and artisans who would like to be put on the database are urged to submit their CV’s at the nearest regional office of the Department of Public Works or call our toll free number 0800 782 542.



0800 782 542.



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