Public Service Commission confirms the investigation to verify qualifications of 2000 SMS members

14 October 2022

As an institution that is mandated by the Constitution to promote good administrative practice in the Public Service, the PSC confirms a request and the investigation that is currently underway to verify qualifications of 2000 Senior Managers within the government employ.

Qualifications are an important part of the professional credentials of the senior echelons of all government employees. Although they do not signify competence, qualifications should guide recruitment and selection processes to ensure that the right candidates are appointed to vacant positions.

  • It is common knowledge that departments do not often update the Personnel Salaries system, known as PERSAL. As such, the information extracted from PERSAL on employees qualifications is not always accurate. The PSC is certain of this based on studies that were conducted on this issue over the years.

  • When the issue of qualifications of Senior Management Services (SMS) was first raised in 2021, the Department of Public Service and Administration (DPSA) requested departments to update PERSAL in the second half of 2021, but this process has not been completed mainly as a result of the fact that there was no strict deadline set and the process was not monitored closely. However, it is also a fact that there are SMS members who do not have NQF 7 qualifications. The PSC assumes that this group of employees would have been appointed prior to the introduction of the NQF 7 requirement and they would have progressed on the basis of their work experience, competence and knowledge gained in the workplace over the years. In some cases, this may have been augmented through short courses.

  • In order to address this matter properly, the PSC has requested information from the DPSA, specifically the breakdown of information per department and salary levels. This information would be of great importance as the investigation of the PSC is underway.

The PSC should be given time to attend to this matter properly.

Issued by the Public Service Commission

Enquiries: Humphrey Ramafoko - 082 782 1730 or

National Anti-Corruption Hotline: 0800 701 701



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