From ‘ghost workers’ scam to hiring spree – Here are Prasa’s newest vacancies

Hot off the heels of the ghost worker scam, the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa) said it will be filling key vacancies within the company by June 2022.

Here’s what you need to know.

Prasa’s ghost workers

On Tuesday, Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula admitted to Prasa being scammed by some 3,000 ‘ghost workers’, a scam initially uncovered in December.

The rail agency has since stopped the salary payments, and will now commence with efforts to stabilise the entity by filling key vacant positions.

Mbalula said he now faces the “arduous task of getting Prasa back on track, following years of sub-par performance, failure to spend on its capital programmes and corruption.”

Stabilising Prasa

While efforts to stabilise the company will go towards recovering commuter rail operations and giving better consideration to operational safety and security, the most pressing matter is to fill key vacancies.

Among the vacant positions to be filled are a group CEO, a chief human capital officer, the chief procurement officer and the Prasa CEO.

Addressing a virtual meeting of the Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa) on Tuesday, Mbalula said this includes “vacancies at senior management level”.

“As of 28 February 2022, a total of 737 employees were acting in various roles across the Prasa Group at a cost of R8,843,649.77. Prasa currently has over 3 500 vacancies nationally”.

Filling the vacancies

According to Mbalula, Prasa has a “vacancy rate of 19%, which remains unacceptably high”.

The focus will now be on “lowering this rate to acceptable levels”.

He said a “new operating model and organisational design will be implemented in a phased manner, commencing at the beginning of the new financial year”.

How to apply

The vacancies below are advertised on Prasa’s job portal. Each vacancy will have an accompanying PDF detailing the minimum requirements for the job, skills, key outputs and expectations.

Take note of the reference number and forward your application to [email protected] before 29 March 2022.

Group CEO

The Chief Executive Officer position became vacant when the previous group CEO Zolani Matthews’s contract was terminated late last year.

The vacancy was first advertised in March 2022 and “filling the position is a priority”, Prasa said.

David Mphelo is currently acting as group CEO.

Chief human capital officer

The position has been vacant since July 2021, following the passing of the incumbent, Thandeka Mabija. Nonhlanhla Kondowe is currently acting as group human capital officer.

As per Prasa, the vacancy may be affected by the new operating model, which will introduce a shared service model.

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Chief procurement officer

The position was advertised earlier this month, after being vacant since July 2021. Prasa hopes to have this key position secured by June 2022.

Until then, Willie Mathebula will serve as acting chief procurement officer.

Chief Executive Officer: Prasa Rail

This position has been vacant for 13 months and will only be advertised upon implementation of the new organisational structure.

Nelson Malefane is currently acting. As with the chief human capital officer position, the Prasa Rail CEO vacancy will be affected by the new operating model.

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Other Prasa vacancies

Position Vacant since Notes Currently Acting
Chief Executive Officer: Prasa CRES Nov 2021 Mutual separation with the incumbent A. Lindeque
Chief Audit Executive Nov 2021 To be filled by June 2022 J. Mahlangu
Group Chief Security Officer To be filled by June 2022 T. Mahenye
Safety Nominated Manager To be filled by June 2022 None
Group Company Secretary To be filled by June 2022 B. Alexander
Group CFO Previous incumbent facing disciplinary process
Executive in the Office of the Group CEO Subject to pending legal processes None
Group Executive: Legal, Risk and Compliance Subject to pending legal processes T. Tsautse