DOL builds ICT and online capacity

The SA Department of Labour has appointed Thabo Sefali as chief information officer,  to build its information and communication technology (ICT) capacity.

Sefali joins the DOL during its exit plan from a ten year R2-billion public private partnership (PPP) with Siemens, at the start of an era of ad hoc ICT contracts and internal ICT and data capacity building, as reported on

Siemens is expected to “leave behind a solid infrastructure including systems, servers and human capital” at the DOL and its divisions, including the Compensation Commissioner , Unemployment Insurance Fund, and recently launched jobs referral section.

Some labour data capacity outsourced

“After the exit strategy, we intend to become a vibrant ICT organisation that has an internal capacity, something that we missed with the PPP”, explained Sefali. His appointment is backdated to 1 April, acknowleging his recent acting CIO role.

“Where necessary we will have resort to multiple sourcing options to beef up [ICT] capacity. We are looking at becoming o a paperless entity, while ensuring that our services are accessible to the public through various platforms, including online, mobile, advanced contact centres and other channels through partnering with industry,” said Sefali.

Increasing politicising of state appointments in general, according to political analyists, is heightened by the roles of the SA Department of Labour in enforcing black economic empowerment (BEE), drafting further BEE provisions, and its new role as unemployment registrar and employment agency.

SA Labour minister Mildred Oliphant and her directors general have confirmed in recent speeches at Job Fairs, that government perceive unemployed youth as a poliltical and economic threat.

Sefali is from Nyanga in Western Cape province, attended Head Start College and WS&L Training College. He was a youth development organizer, and has experience at Old Mutual, consulting for IBM to Anglo American and Anglo Gold, and at Woolworths as analyst programmer and IT process manager.

The new Labour ICT head recently served as IT operations manager at Water Affairs until 2008, and IT Director at Rural Development and Land Reform. He will play various roles in development and execution of the department’s new ICT strategy being drafted and approved in July 2012.

The DOL and Siemens public private partnership (PPP) ends in November 2012 and service transfer handover starts in September. Siemens provided automation, communication networks, data technologies and consumer products.

The Labour ICT contract had escalated to R1.9-b due to “factoring in the consumer price index and expenditure on additional services”.

PHOTO; SA Department of Labour CIO, Thabo Sefali. “We intend to become a vibrant ICT organisation that has an internal capacity, something that we missed with the Siemens partnership”.

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