After much dilly dallying Government has now been able to make a decision and appointed a new Commissioner of Labour in the person of Rose Sennanyana, former Senior Assistant Director (Industrial Class and Personnel Relations) at the Directorate of Public Service Management (DPSM) to assume responsibility with immediate effect.
Sennanyana’s appointment, according to Segakweng Tsiane was not a promotion but merely redeployment from DPSM to the Ministry of Labour and Home Affairs (MLHA).
“Thus it was to take effect immediately on Wednesday 14th April 2010 on account of the fact that the gap has existed for some time now and has long been overdue,” said Tsiane.
Although admitting the filling of the post was long overdue, Tsiane argued that given the significance of the role played by a person in the position Commissioner of Labour Government needed to ensure that whoever was assigned the responsibility would be suited to assume the reins of that post.
For her part, Sennanyane told the Sunday Standard that as much as she embraced her new found mandate, she was not oblivious of the challenges awaiting her.
“While I am fully awake to the fact that a lot has happened since the time I left the Department of Labour as a Regional Labour Officer, it also comes to me as bonus that Iam not a total stranger to the department,” said Sennanyana.
The former Senior Assistant Director acknowledged that the transformation of the civil service into a unionized workforce and the imminent adoption of a new public service law represent some of the tough but, “certainly not insurmountable challenges that one can already freely think of.”
No doubt, one of the imports of the democratization of labour relations in Government is that employees are generally expected to relate with the employer on an equal level as social partners.
“What I intend is to pick from where my predecessor has left and possibly make the most of whatever knowledge base may be available and find a way of learning better ways of developing a team that would move as if in unison to execute our mandate,” posited Sennanyana.
The new Commissioner intimated to the Sunday Standard that despite her relative newness to the office, she derives confidence from the fact that notwithstanding the much needed support she is banking on from colleagues, she believes in dialogue.
She pledged to identify and engage with the relevant stakeholders, especially Employers and Trade Unions with a view to determine the burning spots.
Sennanyana holds a post graduate Diploma in Labour Law from the University of Cape Town, South Africa, Master of Science (MSc) in Labour Relations from the Michigan State University in the United States of America (USA) and a Bachelor of Commerce(BCom) Management from the University of Botswana.
The new Commissioner who is in her middle age has previously served in the Department of Labour, MLHA, as a Regional Labour Officer from August 1992- December 2003, after which she resigned to go into the private sector.
She only stayed about six months at Shoprite Checkers Group as a Regional Human Resources Manager from the time immediately upon her leaving the civil service, whereupon she was then employed by Sennfoods as an HR Manager until 2007 when again left to join DPSM as a Senior Assistant Director.