Employment creation in public works

Employment creation in public works

H A B I T A T INTL. Vol. 19, No. 3, pp. 331-355, 1995 Elsevier Science Ltd Printed in Great Britain 0197-3975/95 $9.50 + 0.00 Pergamon 0197-3975(95)...

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H A B I T A T INTL. Vol. 19, No. 3, pp. 331-355, 1995 Elsevier Science Ltd Printed in Great Britain 0197-3975/95 $9.50 + 0.00



Employment Creation in Public Works Labour-intensive Construction in Sub-Saharan Africa: The Implications for South Africa a R.T. McCUTCHEON

Unive~i~ ~the Witwa~rand, ~hannesbu~,SouthA~ica ABSTRACT

U n e m p l o y m e n t is one of South Africa's most pressing problems. There is also a widely acknowledged need for housing and infrastructure, both urban (water supply, sewerage reticulation and treatment, storm-water drainage, streets, electrical supply and waste disposal) and rural (dams, irrigation canals and roads). These problems are set within a low level of individual and community capacity in both technical and institutional terms. From a theoretical perspective supported by experience elsewhere in Africa, there are reasons for considering that properly constructed employment-creation programmes based on the use of labour-intensive methods could be established to construct and maintain the required physical infrastructure, thus creating employment, skills and institutional capacities. Following a summary of the main tenets of labourintensive construction, this paper will provide a brief description of two major programmes in Kenya and Botswana and will draw the main conclusions as to the reasons for their success. Implications for South Africa will then be derived. In the light of the experience elsewhere in Africa recent developments in South Africa will then be described and assessed. The paper will conclude that for success to be achieved a four-phase approach will be required to institute large programmes of labour-intensive construction and maintenance.

INTRODUCTION In his Lives of the Caesars Suetonius records the following of E m p e r o r Vespasian: To an engineer who offered to convey some lofty columns to the Capitol at a small expense, he gave no mean reward for his device, but declined his services with the remark: 'You must let me feed my poor commons'.2 The issues raised are still with us. In South Africa one of the foremost problems facing government is the extremely high level of u n e m p l o y m e n t and its accompanying poverty. At the same time there are great demands for the construction and maintenance of housing and public works, both urban (water supply, sewerage reticulation and treatment, storm-water drainage, streets, electrical supply and waste disposal) and rural (dams, irrigation canals and roads). These problems are set within a low level of individual and community capacity in both technical and institutional 331


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terms. Elsewhere in sub-Saharan Africa this complex of factors has been partly addressed through national programmes of labour-intensive rural road construction. Definition

'Labour-intensive' is a phrase in economics to describe an operation in which proportionately more labour is used than other factors of production. Labourintensive 3 construction may be defined as the economically efficient employment of as great a proportion of labour as is technically feasible to produce as high a standard of construction demanded by the specification and allowed by the funding available. Labour-intensive construction is the effective substitution of labour for equipment and results in the creation of a significant increase in employment opportunities per unit of expenditure. Although anticipating the text a little an illustration is useful here: conventional rural road construction is highly equipment-intensive, some 10% of costs go to labour; in labour-intensive rural road construction 65% of costs go to labour: i.e. 61/2 times as much. This is achieved partly through the creation of individual, community and institutional capacities by the establishment of large, carefully planned, long-term national programmes. A corollary to this definition is what it is not: it is not the use of large numbers of people on relatively unplanned emergency or relief projects to construct something of ill-defined quality and value; that is labour-extensive. Structure o f this paper

Drawing on the theory and practice of labour-intensive construction, it will be argued in this paper that in South Africa unemployment (and thus poverty) could be alleviated (but not solved), public works constructed, and individual and community capacities created, through a well planned national employment creation programme using labour-intensive methods for the construction and maintenance of public works. The dimensions of the various problems will first be sketched and then the principles of labour-intensive construction and the scale and scope of the national programme in Kenya will be outlined, with some mention of those in Botswana, Malawi, Lesotho and Ghana. The major lessons learned are pertinent not merely to labour-intensive construction but to national employment creation/public works programmes. Various endeavours to implement labourintensive construction in South Africa, especially on a large scale, will be described briefly and analysed in the light of the work elsewhere in sub-Saharan Africa. The paper will close with an outline of the process that should be adopted for a national employment creation programme.


At least five aspects of unemployment in South Africa are disturbing. Firstly, the level is high and rising: from 7% in 19804 to 18% in 1991.5 Secondly, whereas in the early 1960s the formal sector had been able to absorb 81% of the annual net additions to the labour force, by the late 1980s this had shrunk to 8%. 6 Thirdly, unemployment varies from region to region: 11% in the Cape Peninsula to an average of 29% in the former so-called 'homelands'. 7 Even this latter figure does not capture the severity: in certain areas it has been estimated at 60%

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to 70%. 8 Fourthly, Wilson and Ramphele have given searing accounts of the deleterious effects on individuals of their being unemployed 9 and research at the University of the Witwatersrand has shown that the combination of violence and unemployment has led to extreme levels of stress in the townships. 10 Fifthly, examination of the unemployment problem reveals that the economy as a whole has become more capital-intensive.ll Between 1986 and 1990, for any additional expenditure, less than half the additional employment was created than during the period 1971 to 1980.12 The importance of 'job creation' has been acknowledged in many policy statements: it was one of the first items in the Development Policy of the ANC 13 and featured prominently in the Report of the 1992 Economic Policy Conference of the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU).14 Undoubtedly one must look to political and social changes and to growth of the whole economy to solve the unemployment problem. However, not only is the South African economy either shrinking or barely growing but less employment is being created per unit of expenditure. Thus, in addition to major emphasis upon policies to expand the economy, other policies are required to re-structure current activities so as to create greater employment opportunities per unit of expenditure within existing budgetary constraints.

Housing and public works Government is faced with explicit demands for housing and public works. In urban areas the demand for housing has been estimated at between 198,000 and 328,000 units per annum for the next 10 years.15 Municipal public works (water supply, sewerage, streets, storm-water drainage, electricity, waste disposal) will be required for such housing. Equally, in many rural areas there is need for public works (dams, irrigation, roads). The demand for public works is being made while other voices are warning that insufficient funding is being made available for the maintenance of the public works already in place. For example, in relation to constructed gravel roads in Natal it is only possible to keep '25% of the network' adequately gravelled. 16 In relation to the whole of South Africa it has been estimated that R5, 5 billion (in 1994, US$1 = 3.5 SA Rand) is necessary 'just to get the network into an acceptable condition'. 17 While the magnitude of the problem is daunting, the provision of housing and public works would be an opportunity to generate employment. The building of houses is already relatively labour intensive. However, civil engineering is typically equipment intensive and would not generate that many jobs unless it became labour-intensive.

Individual and community capacities in technical and institutional terms The previous two sets of problems must be seen within the context of two particular legacies of apartheid. Firstly, the Bantu Education Act of 1953, together with other legislated prejudices, led to the downgrading of mathematics and science in 'black' (used instead of 'disadvantaged') education to the extent that in 1990, of 10,000 'black' school entrants, only one will be eligible to study engineering or medicine at university 18 (by comparison the UK ratio has been estimated at 1 : 40). 19 This means that the black community is sadly disadvantaged in technical terms and specific efforts are required to foster individual technical skills. A corollary is that it is likely that technical work will continue to involve the white technical fraternity for some time to come. Secondly, the formal institutions nominally responsible for public works in black areas were either within the essentially white public sector or (i)


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without widespread legitimacy, (ii) inefficient and (iii) corrupt. 2o Although there has been rapid development of CIVIC associations and links between the CIVICS and white local authorities, the historical lack of a technical capacity and the absence of effective institutions means that any proposals for public works should bear in mind (i) the existing vacuum and (ii) the need to create local capacities for decision making, programming, planning, construction, maintenance, monitoring, control, accountability and evaluation. Within such a context it is, therefore, important that measures to address problems should consider the process as well as the product. The provision of housing and public works should be an opportunity not only to create employment but also individual skills (technical, administrative, managerial, commercial) and community capacity to engage in the whole process of the provision, administration and maintenance of public works. The need to generate greater employment opportunities per unit of expenditure, construct and maintain housing and public works and foster individual skills and institutional capacities has just been outlined. From such a perspective it is worthwhile examining the nature of labour-intensive construction and then the national programmes of labour-intensive construction and maintenance of rural roads that have been established elsewhere in sub-Saharan Africa. This is by no means the only frame of reference for national public works programmes. Useful lessons may also be derived from other public works programmes especially those in Asia, and those during the 1930s in South Africa, Europe and the USA. A cursory overview will be provided before dealing with national labour-intensive programmes in more detail. Public works p r o g r a m m e s

During the 1920s and 1930s public sector programmes of one kind or another were used in order to alleviate the 'poor white' problem. 21 In 1989 Wilson and Ramphele argued that public works programmes would be necessary to relieve present unemployment. 22 In August 1991 The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) convened a seminar on 'One Million Jobs by 1992'. The purpose of the seminar was to review experience and opinions about public works programmes and to develop a strategy for the future. Papers presented at the seminar included "Job Creation Schemes in the United States in the Depression", 23 "International Job Creation Schemes", 24 "Information on Public Works Programs in South Africa",25 "Public Works Programme in South Africa ''26 and the author gave a presentation on the issues to consider when planning a public works programme. The seminar provided a very useful background to the subject. Here attention is drawn to two sets of conclusions that were reached in different papers. Based on Abedian and Standish's report for the Human Sciences Research Council,27 the Trade Union Research Project reported that the most prevalent causes of failure of public works programmes were: • • • •

they were seldom scaled to the magnitude of national manpower needs; they were often introduced in a fragmented and unsystematic way; they used inappropriate technology; they were introduced on an ad hoc basis and were not linked to an overall development policy; • they had also failed because of the lack of administrative back-up; • there had been inadequate post-project maintenance; • they were almost entirely dependent upon the government's commitment to the programme: if there was a lack of commitment this would be reflected in a lack of funding.

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In their review of international special public works programmes, the Trade Union Research Project concluded that there were certain problems; these included: • the conflict between sufficient planning and the need to start a programme quickly and use donor investment funds speedily: a programming stage of 6 months should be introduced; • local institutions often have difficulty in taking responsibility for execution of the projects: governments must allocate adequate human resources to the projects; • there is often not enough active participation by local beneficiaries. It is also worth stressing the proportion of government expenditures which have been devoted to public (relief) works programmes in the past. According to Abedian and Standish, between 1920 and 1940 the proportion of government expenditure on unemployment relief measures varied from 0.6% in 1920 to 15.8% in 1935; in only the first 2 years, 1920 and 1921, was the proportion lower than 1.7%.28 In the case of the USA it has been reported elsewhere that: Unemployment relief, aid to agriculture and public works designed to promote employment together account for $26.0 billions, or nearly 50 per cent of the total federal expenditures in 1934-40. 29 A major conclusion reached about the vast majority of public sector jobcreation schemes elsewhere in the world is that they have generally concentrated upon 'job creation' with little concern for either the quality of the product or the economic efficiency of the work. (As will be seen, the same has been true for similar programmes in South Africa.) In most e m e r g e n c y job creation schemes there has been n o interest in the quality of the product and little concern for the economic efficiency of the work. In relation to the South African government's efforts to solve the poor white problem during the 1920s and 1930s Abedian and Standish have quoted a 1920/1 Forestry Department report which exemplifies the extent to which these programmes operated inefficiently: The cost of these settlements proved to be very high i n d e e d . . . The costly nature of the work hardly justified the settlements from the economic and purely forestry point of view, but from the social standpoint the Department of White Labour is well satisfied. 30 While the majority of job-creation schemes have concentrated upon 'job creation' at the expense of quality of product, several famous projects including those in the USA and Germany in the 1930s were more concerned with product than employment creation. Despite the image of man-made autobahns, research has revealed that they were n o t built labour-intensively. 31 Here the emphasis becomes quality or quantity of product and employment generation is not considered seriously. The tendency to concentrate on employment creation at the expense of concern for the quality and cost of the product may be seen within a UN agency. In 1969 the International Labour Organisation (ILO) established its World Employment Programme. Within this programme there were two divisions: Special Public Works, and Technology and Employment. The former was a much larger operation than the latter. Special Public Works devoted its energies to emergency job creation, while Technology and Employment concentrated upon the production of a good product by methods that employed as many people as possible in an economically efficient manner. Over the years there was increasing dissatisfaction with the lack of quality and high cost of the Special Public Works Programmes. In 1987 the two divisions were amalgamated


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so that the dual perspective of the Technology and Employment Branch could be brought to bear on the ILO's much larger Special Public Works division. Much of the author's experience was derived from his association with the Technology and Employment Branch. Through this work the author became convinced that the use of labour-intensive methods during the construction of infrastructure was economically efficient and could alleviate unemployment. However, this can only be achieved with the adoption of a dual perspective that lays as much emphasis upon the product as upon employment. The successful realisation of this dual perspective requires an understanding of the socioeconomic environment within which it will be implemented; and persistence. In face of the difficulties that will be encountered, an understanding of the theoretical principles and practical achievements of labour-intensive construction is essential. These will be sketched in the following sections and then the implications for South Africa will be derived. LABOUR-INTENSIVE CONSTRUCTION

The definition has already been given. Its intellectual base began with the recognition that the conditions regarding the factors of production were different in developing countries from those in the industrialised world. A major thrust of the development policies of the 1950s and 1960s was the growth of Gross National Product and the promotion of rapid urbanisation and industrialisation, the latter involving the transfer of technology from industrialised countries: government policies promoted the use of machinery. 32 Yet by the late 1960s unand under-employment were increasing. 'Take-off' into self-sustained economic growth, as predicted by Rostow, for example, had simply not taken place. 33 Technology transfer became problematic. Much later it was recognised that there was a need for a local technological capacity (a major theme of this paper) .34 In 1969, as mentioned above, the ILO set up its World Employment Programme (WEP), which was devoted to seeking ways of creating employment opportunities not only through economic growth but also in its absence. Research was carried out into the employment potential within the existing economy. One of the concepts explored seemed bizarre in the context of the late 20th century: the reverse substitution of labour for equipment. 35 Civil construction was identified as worthy of attention. Firstly, it formed a definable portion of the economy and thus employed a significant proportion of the work force. Secondly, in the industrialised countries and the modern sector of developing countries, the civil engineering industry was capital-intensive (building by comparison was labour-intensive); thus the opportunity existed to substitute people for machines. Thirdly, 50-60% of most countries' capital formation is in construction as a whole and the civil portion plays a key part in the infrastructure of the economy (roads, railways, dams, ports, power stations, irrigation, airports). Fourthly, 60--70% of civil construction in developing countries is carried out through the public sector and should, therefore, be amenable to influence by government policy. 36 The feasibility of the reverse substitution of labour for equipment was analysed. Two categories of product were identified: one in which the substitution of equipment for labour was essential - - and, therefore, not amenable to reverse substitution; the other where the substitution of labour for equipment was not essential. Essential substitution would result from any of the following: (i)

the creation of a totally new product by an industrial complex, as for example in the petrochemical or bio-engineering industries;

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(ii) where a system of machinery was such that • it was more accurate than had ever been achieved before; • a complete product came out of the system; • no manual transportation was required from one part of the process to another; i.e. no possibility of delay or double handling; • orders of magnitude in productivity increase were achieved by comparison with traditional manufacture. By comparison reverse substitution of labour for equipment would be technically feasible if the industry still involved: (i)

a product produced by machines which were essentially altered editions of old handcraft tools; (ii) a product still produced by the mere mechanical fitting together of partial products (with consequent opportunity for delay and double handling). It was concluded that the possibility for the efficient reverse substitution of people for machines was less likely in 'process centred' industries and more likely in 'product centred' ones. 37 Looked at from this perspective civil construction was promising: the products were time-honoured and mostly individual, production included the fitting together of partial products and was littered with possibilities for delay and double-handling, and the machines were magnified versions of hand tools. Earthworks operations - - excavation, load, haul, unload and spread - - were of particular interest and accounted for about 50% of expenditure on civil construction. Other promising avenues included aggregate production and pavement construction. In 1971 the World Bank initiated a research programme: "Study of the Substitution of Labor for Equipment in Road Construction", later broadened to " . . . civil construction". 38 The research was formally completed 15 years later in 1986 and comprised three main phases. 39 A major conclusion from the first phase was that "it is technically feasible to substitute labour for equipment for all but about 10 to 20 per cent of total road construction cost for the higher quality construction standards considered". This conclusion was later generalised to: "labour-intensive methods are technically feasible for a wide range of construction activities and can generally produce the same quality of product as equipment-intensive methods". In relation to economic efficiency, early conclusions were that "the extremely low productivity of traditional labour-intensive technologies . . . at the prices for equipment and fuel then prevailing (1973) could not be economically competitive with equipment except at extremely low wages". However, Phase Two studies showed that "labour productivity can be improved very significantly by the introduction of certain organisational, management and mechanical improvements". Ten- to twenty-fold improvements in labour-productivity were noted: from 1/8th of a cubic metre to 3-5 m 3 (5-7 tons). In particular this was achieved through the linking of payment to production by the setting of tasks. Later the skill of the site supervisor was recognised as a major contributory factor. During this phase of research it became apparent that there were really two sides to the coin. Initially the onus was on those who dared to suggest that labour might compete with equipment to prove that labour was not incompetent. The datum for comparison was always highly efficient equipment. But during the mid 1970s research showed that this was not even tenable in industrialised countries, let alone developing ones. For example, in industrialised countries average productivities for a bulldozer were 25%, and for a loader 65%, of theoretical maxima. In developing countries highs of 17% were achieved on


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large-scale operations. The smaller the scale of work and the more dispersed the operation the lower the productivities observed: 5% and lower were recorded. 40 It began to be realised that a complex of factors severely limited the long-term productivity of equipment in developing countries. This was not much of a problem during construction. New roads were considered essential for development and a quick way for national politicians and donors to produce visible results. Most new roads were constructed by expatriate companies using the same design and technology as conventional equipmentintensive construction (about 10% to labour): 'parachute' operations. While construction was by expatriate companies and donor financed, maintenance, if mentioned, was to be the responsibility of government. For a variety of reasons it proved more difficult to maintain than construct: procurement procedures, foreign exchange, fuel, spares, mechanics, workshops, trained operators, management systems, were all a problem. 41 The technological and system requirements of equipment were not matched by local technological and institutional capacities. While low equipment productivities have been mentioned, the extent of the difficulties with equipmentbased systems may be illustrated in two ways. It has been estimated that of the US$45 billion invested in road construction in sub-Saharan Africa (excluding South Africa), some US$15 billion of constructed road has physically disappeared and if considerable amounts are not invested within the next few years a further 40% of the network will be in jeopardy.42 In its 1981 report on The R o a d Maintenance Problem and International Assistance the World Bank stated that in no case had it been expected that it would take 10 years to establish a capital-intensive maintenance system, yet in no case had it taken less than 10 years. 43 In the long run the use of equipment in this type of work has certainly not revealed the orders of magnitude of improvement expected by analogy with manufacturing; to the contrary. But these assessments were still in the future. While the later phases of the World Bank study on the substitution of labour for equipment did take some account of the lowered equipment productivities in developing countries, it was mainly concerned with the improvements that could be achieved by advanced labour-intensive methods over the inefficient traditional methods. Placing more emphasis upon the need to improve the productivity of labour than delineating the actual productivity of equipment, one of the Phase Three conclusions was that with superior tools, 44 high incentives and good management, labour productivity could be improved to the point that labour-intensive methods could be fully competitive with equipment-intensive methods at certain wage rates. In 1983 in its Sector Support Strategy Paper for Transportation the World Bank advised: Wherever the basic wage actually p a i d . . , is less t h a n . . , about US$4.00 per day in 1982 prices, and labor is available in adequate quantities, the alternative of using labor-intensive techniques should be seriously considered. 45 The present equivalent of $4.00 in 1982 would be over R30. 46 FROM THEORY TO PRACTICE

Over the past 20 years labour-intensive road construction has progressed from being a hypothetical possibility to a practical reality. 47 National programmes have been established in Kenya, 48 Botswana, 49 Ghana, 50 Lesotho 51 and Malawi; 52 several pilot projects have been carried out in Ethiopia, 53 The Gambia, 54 Mozambique, 55 Tanzania 56 and Zambia. 57 These projects and programmes have usually been initiated by governments as part of their policies for rural

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development, and have included the creation of employment opportunities, the provision of infrastructure and the fostering of agriculture. The programme in Kenya will be dealt with in some detail below, and to a lesser extent that in Botswana. The Kenyan rural access roads programme

The Third Phase of the World Bank's research began with further investigation of the improved labour-intensive methods in single-site operations and then expanded into consideration of multi-site operations. 58 This research joined forces with the ILO's recommendations to the Kenyan government on employment. 59 In turn it gelled with a Kenyan government interest in increasing agricultural production. The farmers had said that they could produce more food but would be unable to get their produce to market because of the lack of access roads. 6° Despite a measure of synchronicity, engineers within the Kenyan Ministry of Works, which was responsible for the major part of the road network, were extremely sceptical of the use of labour-intensive methods for road construction. 6t A report carried out by an internationally respected consulting firm had shown that the use of labour-intensive methods would be far more costly than the use of equipment. 62 Nonetheless, donor pressure was brought to bear and the Ministry of Works (later Transport and Communications) somewhat reluctantly agreed to establish a Special Projects Branch to house a pilot project. The pilot project was carried out in 1974. 63 New designs and specifications were developed for low-volume rural roads constructed by labour-intensive methods: final camber was set at 5% instead of the conventional 1.5 to 2%, in-situ material was used extensively; and even more 'shocking', compaction was achieved by natural consolidation, weathering and the passage of vehicles. Through detailed work studies, 'task' rates for different activities were ascertained as well as the organisation of construction operations so as to effectively use increased productivities ('balancing'). High productivities require good quality tools: specifications had to be developed and Tender Boards persuaded that tools had to first accord to specification and then to lowest cost. Management systems were developed for recording, reporting, monitoring, controlling, procurement and administration. The wage rate was set above the government minimum and workers were hired on monthly contracts. In 1975 the Kenyan Government decided to implement a national Rural Access Roads Programme (RARP). 64 Progress was by no means unproblematic (the greatest problem was with the most equipment-intensive portion) and there is an extensive literature on the programme. In a nutshell: by 1976 only 250 km of road had been constructed, by 1986:8,000 (Fig. 1). 65 At its peak over 15,000 people were employed - - over 120,000 years of employment. In order to obtain the necessary skilled personnel to implement such a programme, a fully integrated training programme was established to train the necessary site road-builders, clerks, drivers, multi-site supervisors and engineers. Building upon the pilot project work, all the training material had to be generated by the programme itself. The R A R P became progressively more absorbed into the formal institutional structure of the Ministry: initially somewhat tenuously located within a Special Projects Branch, it was eventually squarely within the Construction Branch. For the first 6 years the senior engineers were expatriates. Progressively more Kenyan engineers became involved. Whereas in 1978 there were only two Kenyan engineers to some 20 expatriates, by 1985 there were 23 Kenyans to six expatriates. Of equal importance, since 1981 the programme has been headed by a Kenyan. For most of the 1980s the Permanent Secretary of the K~B 19:3-H


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I 1gel



Fig. 1. Kenya rural access programme accumulated length of road. (Source: Hagen 1985)

Ministry was a person who had previously been a District Engineer in the R A R P . His personal knowledge of, interest in, and c o m m i t m e n t to the programme was invaluable: at crucial m o m e n t s the Permanent Secretary acted in support of the programme. Internal success may be judged by the fact that the Kenyan Government has continued to find the funds for the programme. In addition, the G o v e r n m e n t itself (i.e. without D o n o r support) began to finance maintenance (which had not initially been considered). Equally, in 1987 it formally initiated the Minor Roads Programme which was committed to the maintenance of the 8,000 k of access road and the upgrading and maintenance of 4,500 km of gazetted road. 66 It has also begun to use labour-intensive maintenance on the major road network. Such formal success was mirrored by reports that at the local level politicians would not allow G o v e r n m e n t to think of stopping the programme because of its dual success: e m p l o y m e n t and usable roads. A more formal analysis showed that the 8,000 km of road had been constructed at a budget overrun of 11%. 67 In investment terms the World Bank's analysis estimated that 69% had remained inside Kenya compared with a maximum of 28% using equipment. The proportion of programme costs devoted to wages was 56%; since 1980 this has varied from 60 to 71%. This increase is a partial reflection of having had a pilot project lead into a long-term programme. Initial high overheads for development, 84% during the first 3 years, were reduced to 16% over the life of the programme. 68 I n d e p e n d e n t analyses of quality were favourable. 69 In 1986 the World Bank published its completion report on its section of the funding. It concluded: Considering the institution building requirement, the staffing and related training need, administration and supervision required for the size of the programme, this has been one of the most successful donor financed programmes in Kenya and one of the best organized labor-intensive road construction programmes anywhere. 70 Botswana

In 1974 the Botswana G o v e r n m e n t decided to initiate a Rural Roads Programme within the Ministry of Works and Communications (MoWC). The intention was to use labour-intensive methods of construction. However, the whole process

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of design, specification, construction, organisation and training was not reevaluated, neither was specialist advice obtained from either the ILO or the World Bank. 71 The programme became progressively more capital-intensive. 72 Despite pressure being brought to bear expatriate engineers within the MoWC refused to countenance the use of labour-intensive methods on the gazetted road network. 73 Fortunately, the non-gazetted network was another matter. Under its policies of decentralisation and rural development, responsibility for non-gazetted roads had been given to the District Councils which were autonomous bodies falling under the overall jurisdiction of the Ministry of Local Government and Lands (MLGL). In 1980 a pilot project of labour-intensive 'district road' construction and maintenance was initiated in the Central District. 74 The ILO was requested to provide Technical Assistance and the author was appointed to lead the team. From the ILO's perspective the intention was to replicate the Kenyan Rural Access Roads Programme. Eventually a successful programme was established and many key aspects are similar to the RARP. However, replication was not as straightforward as might have been expected, given the scale of success achieved by that time in Kenya. In the first place there was complete rejection of labour-intensive construction by the District Engineer's Office, several senior District officials and influential Members of Parliament. A design appropriate to hilly terrain in Kenya was not acceptable in Botswana: distances between villages were greater, speed had a higher priority; vehicles were newer, mostly on government business (so dissatisfaction was quickly relayed back to District Council and Government); the excellent gravel network in South Africa was the standard for comparison. While the fault lay in the design, it was interpreted as the result of the method of construction: roads had to be built by machines, the use of labour resulted in low standard, expensive roads. Fortunately, the President had been the Minister of Finance and Development Planning at the time of the approval of the MLGL project. His personal support gave us the breathing space to improve the design (wider roads, shallower side drains, improved vertical alignment (less bumpy)) and then reconstruct the offending roads. Gradually the construction of acceptable roads and number of people employed overcame the anti-lobby and in 1983 the Ministry decided to expand the pilot project into a national programme. 75 Once the technical details had been clarified a coherent training programme was developed to produce three levels of staff: site level road builders (1 year), multi-site supervisors (2 years), district level co-ordinators (3 years). Between 1980 and 1989, 145 people (55 of them women) were trained as road builders; in addition 11 people were trained as multi-site supervisors and six as district level co-ordinators. Whereas by the end of 1983 only some 200 km of road had been improved and less than 200 people employed at any one time, by 1990 over 2,000 km had been upgraded and over 3,000 people employed (per year). 76 It can be seen that as for Kenya the lead-in time is extensive, partly because of the fact that one is establishing and staffing an institution. The standard of construction is far higher than that in Kenya, it is competitive with equipment, and since an animal drawn haulage system was developed, the overall system is more labour-intensive than that in Kenya: over 65% of costs go to labour. Independent evaluations have concluded that the programme has been a success in relation to most of its objectives. 77 Of greater importance the MLGL has stated that the programme is also an asset to the country. 7s Discussion

Labour-intensive programmes have also been established in Ghana, Lesotho and Malawi. Although there are significant differences 79 between these programmes


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and those in Botswana and Kenya (in particular that in Ghana contracting companies are used for maintenance) the similarities are sufficient to conclude that within different institutional and organisational frameworks, a wide range of techniques of labour-intensive road construction and maintenance have been extensively tried and tested over the past 20 years. Local variations have resulted in experience under climatic conditions varying from arid to tropical; terrain conditions varying from fiat to mountainous; traffic conditions varying from ten to several hundred vehicles a day; standards varying from spot-improvement to engineered gravel roads; and haulage varying from tipper truck to donkey cart - - the latter in relation to a relatively high standard of construction. 80 Institutional frameworks have varied from a Department of Roads within a Ministry of Transport to a Roads Unit within a District Council that was semi-autonomous from a MLGL. Workers have been employed on individual monthly contract or by contractors. In the early phases emphasis was upon the creation of employment opportunities for unskilled labour. Over time it became clear that the productivities achieved by organised labour could not be considered the result of unskilled work. Equally that to motivate labour to construct a sound product it is essential to train skilled supervisors who are technically and organisationally competent and that during training as much attention should be paid to character as competence. Drawing upon experience and analysis of the programmes in Kenya and Botswana in particular, it is considered that the following are the main reasons for success: 81 (i) Programmes were long-term and national. (ii) There was a sound intellectual assessment of the technical feasibility and economic efficiency of using labour-intensive methods: cognisance was taken of technological and institutional capacities. (iii) Technical, institutional, organisation and socio-economic aspects received concentrated attention during preliminary work, continued through pilot projects, embryonic training programmes, and subsequent national programmes. Technical matters included design, standards of construction, specifications, tools and equipment, and methods of construction. Institutional matters included the decentralisation necessary for grassroots success and the centralisation necessary to plan and co-ordinate a large programme. Organisational aspects included management structures and systems (recording, reporting, controlling, monitoring and evaluation) and training. Socio-economic aspects included wage rates, conditions of employment, labour supply, role of women and social impact studies. Prior agreement was reached between the different parties with regard to wage rates, conditions of employment and the role and responsibilities of the community. (iv) Strong organisations were established with good management systems; a balance was achieved between decentralisation and centralisation. (v) Training was extensive and good at what it set out to do. (vi) There was long-term political support. (vii) There was long-term financial commitment. (viii) On balance there was good co-ordination between the government, government departments, those administering the programme, local authorities, those providing technical assistance and donors. This was facilitated by objective external advice by the ILO. And the corollary: they were


short-term emergency relief projects.

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What are the implications of the national programmes elsewhere in sub-Saharan Africa for South Africa? Two broad sets of implications will be drawn, firstly related to labour-intensive construction, secondly to national public works programmes. Firstly, the programmes in Kenya and Botswana have demonstrated that good quality, low-volume rural roads may be constructed and maintained by highly labour-intensive means: five to seven times more employment being created per unit of expenditure. The increase was achieved by the identification of the type of work which could incorporate a significant increase of labour per unit of expenditure and then through extensive investigation of economically efficient implementation. Secondly, the potential was realised through the establishment of national programmes. National programmes have been established through: • the adoption of a long-term national perspective in which a programme is developed; • attention to technical, institutional, administrative, organisational and socioeconomic detail during the preparatory lead-in phase and throughout the programme; • institution building at community, regional and national levels; • extensive training at site, multi-site and national levels. REVIEW OF RECENT LABOUR-INTENSIVE CONSTRUCTION IN SOUTH AFRICA

Turning to the other portion of sub-Saharan Africa, i.e. South Africa: on his return to South Africa late in 1987, the author began to explore the extent to which the success of the programmes in Kenya and Botswana could be replicated in South Africa. Initially it was assumed that replication would be feasible only in rural areas because South Africa was far more industrialised and thus heavy equipment was readily available, together with the operation and maintenance systems for achieving high productivity. 82 Subsequent experience in South Africa has led to the conclusion that the degree of dislocation between the industialised portions of South Africa and the remainder, means that the scope for labour-intensive methods is much greater than appeared at first sight, this view being strengthened by social and political factors. Other conclusions have been derived from experience related to labourintensive construction in South Africa itself. Through extensive involvement in some projects, limited involvement in others and observation of the remainder, a broad perspective was gained of the recent development of labour-intensive construction in South Africa from its beginnings in a few brave initiatives to the present, where hundreds of millions of Rand are being spent on so-called labour-intensive work. 83 The author will first provide a brief review and then focus upon the initiatives which have involved the greatest expenditure.

Initial projects and relatively small-scale developments In the early to mid-1980s odd pilot projects of rural road construction were initiated in the Transkei and Kwazulu. s4 These projects demonstrated that in South Africa labour-intensive methods could be used for low-volume rural road construction. However, none of these projects progressed beyond the construction of a short stretch of road. This is because they had been carried out on an ad hoc basis: the organisations responsible for the work were not linked into a regional or national institution, there was no programme for future work. s5 Isolated pilot projects did not lead to programmes of construction.


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During 1989 negotiations for a longer term programme were initiated in Kwazulu. Funded by the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) the Kwazulu Tribal Roads Maintenance Study was located within Kwazulu's institution responsible for Tribal Authorities with formal links to the Roads Branch of the Kwazulu Works Department (Roads Branch). The study led to the formation of the Kwazulu Tribal Road Upgrading and Maintenance Programme. Recently this has begun to develop along the lines of the programmes in Botswana and Kenya. 86 The programme is now operational in over 20 Tribal Authorities and scheduled to expand to a further ten during the coming year and throughout all 230 over the next 10 years. 87 Policy is in place, funding has been committed, suitable posts in the process of being established and formal training will begin later this year. While progress is encouraging, it must be pointed out that it has taken several years to establish the programme and many problems have had to be surmounted. Similar initiatives elsewhere have not yet taken root in relation to rural road construction. 88 However, in the Transkei, starting in 1986, innovative work has been carried out using labour-intensive methods for the construction of a wide range of municipal public works in Ilinge (water supply and reticulation, sewerage reticulation and treatment, storm-water drainage and streets). Furthermore under the overall guidance of a consultant, small contractors were established and trained. 89 In 1987 the consultant responsible for these innovations became involved in the upgrading of the water mains for the Soweto City Engineer's Department. 90 Somewhat later this project became the Soweto Contractor Development Programme. 91 In turn this has led to various small contractor development initiatives. 92 Elsewhere one contractor has reported significant progress in relation to trenching for pipelines. 93 This work has demonstrated that in South Africa labour-intensive methods may be used for a wide range of civil construction. In the case of replacement of water mains and pipeline trenching, it has been demonstrated that the quality, cost and speed are comparable to equipment-intensive methods. The work in Ilinge and Soweto has also shown that small contractors may be developed capable of using labour-intensive methods. The main weakness of the work in Ilinge and Soweto is that it was project based - - there was no long-term programme (learning curve, training, overheads). 94 Turning from projects to research for a moment: research in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of the Witwatersrand indicates that significant employment opportunities may be created through the use of labour-intensive methods in the earthworks component of civil construction in general and for surfaced roads in urban areas in particular. A cursory analysis of the extent to which labour-intensive methods might be used in the earthworks component of civil construction was carried out by the author. 95 This analysis would need refinement before it could provide an objective basis for predicting the order of magnitude of work that could be created and thus set criteria for achievement. The cursory assessment of the earthworks component of civil construction work undertaken within a part of the public sector indicated that the number of people employed in civil construction could be doubled. If this analysis of only a part of the public sector were to hold true for the whole industry, there would be employment opportunities for not less than 100,000 people. In 1991 Phillips investigated the viability of reintroducing water-bound macadam as a base-course material. He found that there was the possibility for a ten-fold increase in the proportion of labour diverted to the construction of the basecourse. Depending upon the assumptions made, there was a financial premium of about 10-70% .96 As part of his PhD he has carried out more detailed research

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into the financial trade-off between cost and employment; depending upon assumptions made, employment could be increased by a factor of 40 (4,000% increase). 97 Such a finding encourages further research (in particular in terms of a national economic perspective) and must be of interest to anyone who is deeply concerned about the levels of unemployment. Further research is being carried out to determine the number of employment opportunities that could be created throughout the various sub-sectors of civil construction. 9s However, one may be fairly confident that in relation to the road network, potential for an increase in the employment of labour per unit of expenditure exists in the following categories: rural roads: construction and maintenance of non-gazetted and tertiary roads; (ii) urban roads and storm water drainage; construction; and maintenance of primary distributors: sub-base, base course and wearing course. (i)

In the meantime several public authorities and development agencies have attempted to increase the use of labour-intensive methods by putting the onus upon the contractor. The contract documentation has contained exhortations to use these methods "wherever feasible" or "whenever possible". There has been a singular lack of effect. Such conscience-salving exercises have not only failed to understand that the greater use of labour-intensive methods starts with the design, but also that at present the contractor is bound into a socio-technical system based upon the use of equipment and this cannot be changed overnight. 99 On the one hand the designs, specifications and documentation hardly exist; on the other, the industry does not have organisational structures, planning, procedures and supervisors to handle highly labour-intensive construction works. However, we will see below that the industry may be influenced to move in that direction but this has to be from a national perspective and not from that of one contractor engaged on a single contract.

Large-scale projects and programmes While the above projects involved several millions of Rand, we will now turn to those that deal in billions: the Special Employment Creation Programme, the Strategic Oil Funds and the Independent Development Trust's Sites and Services Programme. The Special Employment Creation Programme (SECP) was launched in 1985: 'to provide temporary relief to the unemployed but to refrain from giving them handouts, and to deploy them as productively as possible'. This led to the commitment of large sums of money to so-called labour-intensive construction and maintenance. From April 1985 to June 1990 R719 million was spent on the Programme itself and R423 million on an allied Training Programme (but the training was not linked into the SECP). Funds were still being dispensed during the 1992/3 financial year. Thus well over a billion Rand has been spent through the Programme. The entire Programme has not yet been systematically evaluated. However, various reports allow the following overall observations. 100 The structure of expenditure meant that, in relation to the Programme itself, at best only half the money was allocated to the poor; in relation to the training component considerably less. In relation to projects with short-term and temporary objectives: • • • •

no permanent employment opportunities were created; no physical and social infrastructural assets were created; projects were not integrated into development programmes; projects were inadequately planned, designed, co-ordinated and implemented;


R. T. McCutcheon

• institutional capacities were inadequate to deal with short-term programmes in addition to normal activities; • in some instances permanent workers were replaced by temporary workers. It has been reported that long-term projects did contribute to the creation of permanent employment opportunities and physical and social infrastructure. However, no evidence has been provided as to the balance of expenditure between the short-term and permanent aspects of the programme and there is no evidence that in the latter more employment was created per unit of expenditure. Thus, despite much bandying about of the phrase 'labour-intensive', observation of several projects indicates that they were actually labour-extensive, lol Of greatest importance was the fact that this money was spent through at least 28 different institutions. Despite its title, the Special Employment Creation P r o g r a m m e was not a programme, but mainly a number of poorly conceived, unplanned, uncoordinated projects. Its major weakness is that it was not a programme situated within a firm institutional base. 1°2 In 1991 the South African Cabinet decided to allocate one billion Rand from the sale of strategic oil reserves to special programmes and projects which would benefit undeveloped areas in particular. The overall objective was "to achieve the greatest possible degree of involvement, employment creation, meeting needs and stability through the most cost effective allocation of funds possible". 103 The funds were allocated to various government departments and public sector authorities. Once again, no scholarly review of the expenditure of the Strategic Oil Fund has been carried out. However, it is possible to discuss progress with respect to roads to which approximately R250 million was allocated. Less than 3 months were allowed for proposals to be submitted; work had to begin within 3 months of approval. A preliminary survey has shown that R125 million was allocated to authorities who used it for conventional equipment-intensive projects. 104 Of the remaining R125 million, well over half is being carried out labour-extensively, while the attempts to carry out effective labour-intensive work are severely hampered by the lack of the prerequisites enumerated earlier. A more detailed study has been completed which shows that only 8% of the expenditure was on work which could be accurately described as labour-intensive. 1°5 Similarly, one of the objectives of the IDT's sites and services projects was to create employment opportunities through the use of labour-intensive methods - - given the lack of lead-in time there was a similar lack in effective use of labour-intensive methods. The ineffectiveness in relation to labour-intensive construction was not the fault of the executing agencies, apart from the use of rhetoric, but with government which decided to spend several billion Rand with a lead-in time of 3 to 6 months. By contrast, for a R100 million road project at least 2 years' planning and preparation would be allowed. The above review reveals negative and positive aspects. The vast majority of the expenditure on job creation has been unsystematic and certainly has not made effective use of labour-intensive methods (no institution, no training). The majority of the so-called labour-intensive work has been either conventional construction (i.e. product with no extra employment created) or labour-extensive. However, developments in South Africa have shown that good quality, costeffective and timely construction can be achieved for a range of work far greater than low-volume rural roads. Equally that contractors could play a role in the execution of the work, provided that preparatory work had been done: designs, specifications, contract documentation and the training of personnel. Further expansion of employment creation in public works is limited by the lack of a long-term perspective, national planning and institutional development. Over the past 2 years there have been some positive developments in this direction.

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Recent large-scale initiatives: towards a national public works programme During 1992 a National Consultative Forum on Drought (now the National Rural Development Forum) was initiated. The Forum decided to set up four task forces, one of which was the Employment Task Force. In turn this task force has explored short-term and long-term options. In relation to the long-term it has made recommendations as to the pre-investment work that needs to be carried out for a National Employment Creation Programme using labour-intensive methods for the construction and maintenance of public infrastructure (water supply, sewerage, roads, storm-water drainage, erosion control, irrigation, electricity supply and other physical infrastructure). An intrinsic part of this proposal is the development of individual and institutional capacity (community, local, regional and national): extensive training is envisaged. 106 While the full benefits of such work would be revealed in a long-term programme, the short term has not been ignored. 1°7 The pre-investment work for this programme has been taken forward by the National Economic Forum (NEF). Under the auspices of its Technical Committee a pre-investment study has been carried out.10s On the 29 June 1994 the results of the NEF study were accepted by the Cabinet of the Government of National Unity as the basis of the National Public Works Programme (NPWP). 1°9 The NPWP will not be a 'tack-on' programme: it will cover all public expenditure on infrastructure for which it is feasible to use labour-intensive techniques. In essence the NPWP consists of a process of labour-intensification and increased training and capacity building in the provision of infrastructure. The NPWP is a key component of the government's Reconstruction and Development Programme (RDP). A second initiative is being championed by the National Committee for Labour-intensive Construction (NCLIC) and COSATU. Early in 1992 a member of the South African Federation of Civil Engineering Contractors (SAFCEC) realised that greater use of labour-intensive methods of construction could alleviate unemployment and bring more work into an industry that had been crippled by recession, cutback in government spending and civil war. Representatives of several civil engineering industry associations (SAFCEC, South African Institution of Civil Engineers, South African Association of Consulting Engineers, South African Road Federation) met and decided to convene a symposium on labour-intensive construction. 110 The author was invited to take part in preparatory meetings and present a paper 'Setting the Scene', 111 and advised that if the group were intending to take the subject seriously they should invite C O S A T U to take part in the symposium. This led to a series of meetings between NCLIC (which by this time included the Institute of Municipal Engineers in South Africa) and COSATU. In part this has led to the Executive Director of SAFCEC defining the industry as labour-intensive.112 More importantly this has led to the drafting of a Framework Agreement. The Framework Agreement consists of over 40 items. While each is important, in the first item the industry commits itself: 1.1 To maximise the use of labour intensive systems of construction within public works programmes, with due regard to economics. In turn COSATU has agreed to the linking of payment to production in public works. Both of these commitments have been made within the context of community involvement in the definition of what has to be constructed, where, and in the construction process itself (not just employment creation but also skills: i.e. as much emphasis upon process as product). Training is an intrinsic part of the Agreement. The Framework Agreement between NCLIC, COSATU and the South African National Civics Organisation (SANCO) was signed on 22 June 1993.113 Since then a National Coordinating Committee (NCC)


R. T. McCutcheon

has been formed, an Accreditation Board for Labour-intensive Construction (ABLIC) established, pilot projects have been initiated and a monitoring and evaluation process has been set in motion. The co-operation between the public sector, privately owned companies, the Trades Unions and civic organisations is interesting and unusual to say the least. 114 The Framework Agreement was renegotiated between September 1994 and January 1995. Are these not fundamental components of the long-term programme advocated by the Employment Task Force? Is this not the same as the long-term programme? Yes and No. All aspects of the Framework Agreement would be either critical or useful for the long-term programme. But the industry is currently equipment-intensive. Despite its assertion 'to maximise the use of labour-intensive systems of construction . . . ' it cannot restructure itself overnight. This is explicitly acknowledged in the first item of the Framework Agreement by reference to ' . . . with due regard to economics', supplemented by the examples provided by the industry to support this position which indicate that it has yet to appreciate the extent to which equipment can be replaced by labour. However, it is considered that, for example, in road construction the Framework Agreement could lead to the proportion of cost going to labour increasing from 10% to 15% in the short term. For example, in relation to the N1 motorway between Johannesburg and Pretoria there were two options: 6% or 15% to labour. At that time the 6% option was chosen. The fact that there was a 15% option shows that within e x i s t i n g civil engineering practice it would be possible to generate employment opportunities. The author considers the Framework Agreement could lead to such developments. While not to be sneered at, it pales by comparison to the proportion of cost that could be achieved by labour-intensive methods (60%-70%). Nevertheless, the author considers that the language of the Framework Agreement is sound and as such this initiative would be an ally of the long-term programme: together with other sensible and organised short-term work it would form part of the lead-in phase thus creating some employment and public works, and responding to social needs and political demands. 115 CONCLUSION In conclusion there are several implications for South Africa of labour-intensive construction throughout sub-Saharan Africa (i.e. including South Africa). Specifically rural roads may be constructed and maintained by highly labourintensive means: five to seven times more employment being created per unit of expenditure. It is also possible to create a significant increase in employment opportunities per unit of expenditure across a wide range of civil construction, including most municipal or urban engineering services and using contractors. Research at this university indicates that there is a high employment potential in urban road construction, for example. The national programmes of rural road construction indicate how to establish a national employment creation programme for the construction of public works: the process resulting not only in greater employment but also in the generation of individual and community capacities in technical and institutional terms. National programmes have been established through: • the adoption of a long-term national perspective in which a programme is developed; • attention to technical, institutional, administrative, organisational and socioeconomic detail during the preparatory lead-in phase and throughout the programme;

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• institution building at community, regional and national levels; • extensive training at site, multi-site and national levels. In order for greater success to be achieved in the long run a four phased approach should be adopted: (1) (2) (3) (4)

Orientation. Preparatory work: analyses and design. Pilot/initial training. Expanded training - - national programme.

The above approach has to be located within an institutional framework: national, regional, local. A 'lead-in' time is necessary. During this lead-in period, phases (1) and (2) are carried out. The components of the different phases are listed below. Phase One

Education and agreement at national, regional and local levels as to: (i)

concepts and objectives: asset creation plus significant additional employment opportunities per unit of expenditure; (ii) nature of long-term 'programmes'; (iii) conditions of employment, wages and linking of payment to production. Brief local and national authorities as to type, standard, funding and method of construction; the importance of training, institution (local and national), long-term political and financial commitment. Agreement that labour-intensive public works programmes are not emergency or drought relief projects. Draft long-term programme. Phase Two

Analysis: Preparatory work:

institution (local and national); organisation; levels of funding; specific technical analyses; criteria for staff recruitment; identification of initial communities and training sites. design, specification, documentation; administrative, technical and training manuals; selection of trainees; briefing of communities; priorities.

Revise forward plans. Phase Three

Orientation and training of trainers; start pilot projects and embryonic training programmes; revise training and national programmes; revise manuals and reporting systems prior to initiation of large-scale national programmes. Phase Four

Expand initial training programmes within each sub-sector into a national programme. But the expansion should only be allowed to proceed in the following manner: (i)

at the rate at which the training programme can produce skilled site supervisors and managers (training must pay as much attention to character as technical competence);


R. T. McCutcheon


to the degree to which local communities have the capacity to absorb the trained personnel; (iii) to the degree to which the national institution is able to absorb the trained m a n a g e m e n t personnel and maintain its overall planning, co-ordinating, monitoring and evaluation role. T h r o u g h the ' p r o g r a m m e ' approach (as opposed to 'project') the institution is established together with the h u m a n resources required to implement the work from site level through to national planning and co-ordination. This process means that overheads are high during Phases O n e to Three. However, once the preparatory work has been done and the institution established, overheads revert to more normal ratios. In K e n y a , for example, the ratio of overheads to direct construction was 84 : 16 during the first 3 years (1974-1976), but 16 : 84 over the whole period 1974-1985. Expenditure on training accounted for 1% of p r o g r a m m e costs. 116 The four-phase approach, outlined above, is the result of m a n y years of experience and analysis. This approach will m e a n that the considerable sums of m o n e y which have been allocated by g o v e r n m e n t over the past 10 years to so-called labour-intensive work will have a developmental impact as opposed to being emergency relief. A l t h o u g h it has a proven track record, that does not m e a n that it will be a d o p t e d in South Africa. The World B a n k has r e c o m m e n d e d that where no previous experience exists, a start-up period of at least 3 years should be considered. 117 But in the present political climate even policy makers who are sympathetic towards labour-intensive construction are reluctant to face the reality of the need for a lead-in period. Policy makers who are only concerned with jobs and have little interest in product have even less appreciation of the need for a start-up period. It is r e c o m m e n d e d that the dilemma be resolved through: (i) initiating a long-term e m p l o y m e n t creation p r o g r a m m e lls and (ii) at the same time taking advantage of the F r a m e w o r k A g r e e m e n t and other sensible, short-term initiatives for immediate impact. 119 A n d that the p r o g r a m m e is not treated as emergency-relief. In this way the process of labour-intensive construction could indeed m a k e a contribution to alleviating u n e m p l o y m e n t and generating individual and c o m m u n i t y skills in technical and institutional terms. A t least where the expenditure of public m o n e y is concerned - - and 70% of the funding for civil engineering is public m o n e y - - to take the opportunity, provided by construction of public works, for people to be part of production. Acknowledgement - - The author would like to thank Mrs P.E. King for her patience and assistance in

the preparation of this and manyother documents. NOTES 1. On 25 May 1993 the author delivered an inaugural lecture on this topic at the University of the Witwatersrand. Although based on that text, this paper has been substantiallyrevised and updated in order to make it suitable for publication. 2. C. Suetonius, in De Vita Caesarum, Lib VIII (The Lives of the Caesars, Book VIII), G. Mooney (ed.), (LongmansGreen, London, 1930), p. 137. 3. There has been some debate as to the term 'labour-intensive'. Some authorities prefer to use 'labour-based' as opposed to 'labour-intensive'. They hold that labour-intensive implies that the work is done entirelyby hand whereas 'labour-based' allows the use of equipment where necessary. The author prefers the term 'labour-intensive'for the sense that it conveysof the 'intensive' use of labour, while not precluding the use of appropriate machinery.As far as the author is concerned the essential differenceis not between these two terms but between both of them and 'labour-extensive' where the emphasis is upon the size of the labour force and scant concern for either the product or productivity. 4. A.A. Ligthelm and L. Kritzinger-Van Niekerk, "Unemployment:the Role of the Public Sector in Increasing the Labour Absorption Capacityof the South African Economy",Development Southern Africa 7, 4 (1990), pp. 629-641.

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5. G. Reilly, "CSS Highlights Massive Unemployment", Business Day (11 December 1992), p. 3. 6. L. Kritzinger-Van Niekerk, "Public Works Programmes in South Africa", paper presented at a Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) Seminar, Park Lane Hotel, Johannesburg, 22-23 August 1991. 7. Ibid. 8. G. Reilly, "Urban Unemployment is Rising", Business Day (27 October 1989). C. Fourie, "Life in a Shack Area", Prodder's Development Annual (1988), p. 39. J. Odensk-Duke, reported in D. Feldman (ed.), "Stresses of township life heighten labour conflict says study" (1990). 9. F. Wilson and M. Ramphele, Uprooting Poverty the South African Challenge (David Philip, Cape Town, 1989). 10. J. Odensk-Duke, "Township Stress: Major Impact in the Workplace", Human Resources Management (April 1990), pp. 4-9. 11. L. Kritzinger-Van Niekerk (1991), op. cit., see note 6. 12. Ibid. G. Steyn, "Manufacturers 'replacing workers with machinery'", Business Day (28 September 1990). 13. ANC, Department of Economic Policy, "Discussion Document: Economic Policy", DEP Workshop, Harare 20-23 September 1990. ANC, DEP, "Discussion Document. Economic Policy", no date, p. 4. ANC, "Determining Development Imperatives for South Africa", Arusha International Donors Conference, February 1991, mimeo p. 5. ANC, Project Department, "Discussion Document on Development", mimeo (1990), p. 5. 14. COSATU, Economic Policy in C O S A T U - Report of the Economic Policy Conference, 27-29 March 1992 (COSATU, 1992). 15. J.H. De Loor (Chairman), Housing in South Africa: Proposals on a Policy and Strategy, (The Task Group on National Housing Policy and Strategy of the South African Housing Advisory Council (SAHAC), April 1992). 16. "Crisis in Natal", Asphalt News (3rd Quarter, 1990). 17. "On the Road to Ruin", The Star (20 April 1992), p. 9. 18. M. Cherry, "ANC Moves on Science Policy", Nature 348, (1990), p. 471. 19. W.W. Williams, personal communication to author (February 1991). 20. J. Abbott, "The Theory and Practice of Community Participation in the Provision of Urban Infrastructure", unpublished PhD Thesis, Department of Civil Engineering, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg (1994). 21. 1. Abedian and B. Standish, "Poor Whites and the Role of the State: the Evidence", The South African Journal of Economics 52, 2 (1985), pp. 141-165. I. Abedian and B. Standish, "Public Works Programmes in South Africa: Coming to Terms with Reality", Development Southern Africa 3, 2 (1986). 22. Wilson and Ramphele, op. cit. 23. M. Nicol, "Job Creation Schemes in the United States in the Depression", paper presented at a COSA TU Seminar, Park Lane Hotel, Johannesburg, 22-23 August 1991. 24. Trade Union Research Project (TURP) "International Job Creation Schemes", Paper presented at COSA TU Seminar, "One Million Jobs by 1992", Park Lane Hotel, Johannesburg, 22-23 August 1991. 25. Trade Union Research Project (TURP), "Information on Public Works Programmes in South Africa", paper presented at COSATU Seminar, "One Million Jobs by 1992", Park Lane Hotel, Johannesburg, 22-23 August 1991. 26. Kritzinger-Van Niekerk (1991), op. cit. 27. 1. Abedian and B. Standish, Economic Development and Job Creation Manpower Commission Report No. 10 (Human Sciences Research Council, Pretoria, 1989). 28. Abedian and Standish (1985), op. cit. 29. Alvin H. Hansen, Fiscal Policy and Business Cycles (W.W. Norton, New York, 1941). 30. Abedian and Standish (1985), op. cit. 31. K. L/irmer, Autobahnbau in Deutschland 1933-1945. Zu den Minter-griinden (Academic Verlag, Berlin, 1975). 32. J. James, "The Role of Appropriate Technology in a Redistributive Development Strategy", Ch. 5, in J. James and S. Watanabe (eds), Technology Institutions and Government Policies (Macmillan, London, 1985), p. 116. 33. W.W. Rostow, The Economics of Take Off into Sustained Growth (Macmillan, London, 1963). 34. H. Bruton, "On the Production of a National Technology", Ch. 4, in James and Watanabe (eds.), (1985), op. cit., pp. 81-115. 35. G.W. Irwin, Roads and Redistribution: Social Costs and Benefits of Labour-intensive Road Construction in lran (ILO, Geneva, 1975). W.A. McCieary, Equipment Versus Employment: a Social Cost-benefit Analysis of Alternative Techniques of Feeder Road Construction in Thailand (1LO, Geneva, 1976). M. Allal and G.A. Edmonds, Manual on the Planning of Labour-intensive Road Construction (ILO, Geneva, 1977). Deepak Lal, Men or Machines: a Study of Labour-capital Substitution in Road Construction in the Philippines (ILO, Geneva, 1978). R.T. McCutcheon, "Labour Intensive Construction and Maintenance in Africa: an Introduction", The Civil Engineer in South Africa 32, 11 (1990), pp. 483-491. 36. G.A. Edmonds, "The Construction Industry in Developing Countries", International Labour Review 118, 3 (1979). G.A. Edmonds and D. Miles, Foundations for Change: Aspects of the Construction Industry in Developing Countries (London, Intermediate Technology Publications, 1984). 37. Deepak Lal, (1978), op. cit. 38. International Bank of Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) (World Bank), Study of the Substitution of Labour and Equipment in Road Construction. Phase 1 - - Final Report (IBRD, Washington, DC, October 1971). IBRD, The Study of the Substitution of Labour and Equipment in Civil Construction. Phase H - - Final Report. Staff Working Paper No. 172 (1974).


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39. IBRD, The Study of the Substitution of Labour and Equipment in Civil Construction: a Research and Implementation Project Completion Report, (IBRD, Operations Policy Staff, Transportation, Washington, DC, April 1986). 40. J. Muller, "Labour-intensive Methods in Low-cost Road Construction: a Case Study", International Labour Review 101 (April 1970). R.T. McCutcheon "Social and Environmental Factors: Lessons from Iran", in G.A. Edmonds and J.D.E.F. Howe (eds), Roads and Resources: Appropriate Technology in Road Construction in Developing Countries (Intermediate Technology Publications, London, 1980). 41. G.A. Edmonds and J.J. de Veen, Road Maintenance: Options for Improvement (ILO, Geneva, 1982). 42. Anon, "Road Maintenance in Sub-Saharan Africa. Donors' Meeting in London March 5 and 6, 1985, Points of Consensus in Policy and Priorities" (March 1985). M. Mason, "Road Maintenance Survey for West and Central African Countries", paper prepared for the World Bank for the West and Central African Senior Management Seminar on Planning, Financing and Managing Cost-effective Road Maintenance Programs, Abidjan, June 1985. R. Robinson, S. Thriscutt and C. Harrall, "The Road Maintenance Crisis in Africa: an Agenda for Action", paper presented at the West and Central Africa Senior Management Seminar on Planning, Financing and Managing Cost-effective Road Maintenance Programs, Abidjan, June 1985 (World Bank Transportation Department, Washington, May 1985). R. Robinson, A View of Road Maintenance Economies Policy and Management in Developing Countries: Research Report 145 (Transport and Road Research Laboratory, Crowthorne, 1988). World Bank, Road Deterioration in Developing Countries: Causes and Remedies (World Bank, Washington, DC, 1988). 43. IBRD, The Road Maintenance Problem and International Assistance (Washington, DC, IBRD, 1981). 44. ILO (J.D.G.F. Howe) Guide to Tools and Equipment for Labour-based Road Construction (ILO, Geneva, 1981). 45. IBRD (1986), op. cir. 46. In 1994 one United States dollar (US$) was equal to about 3.5 South African Rand (SA Rand). 47. B. Coukis (Principal Co-ordinator and Contributor), Labor-based Construction Programs: a Practical Guide for Planning and Management (Oxford University Press for the World Bank, London, 1983), p. 6. 48. J.J. de Veen, The Rural Access Roads Programme (ILO, Geneva, 1980 and 1983). 49. R.T. McCutcheon, District Pilot Project of Labour-intensive Road Construction and Maintenance: Botswana: A Description of the District Roads Labour-intensive Improvement and Maintenance Programme. CTP 17 (ILO, Geneva, 1983), 108 pp. R.T. McCutcheon, "The District Roads Programme in Botswana", Habitat International 12 (1988), pp. 23-30. R.T. McCutcheon, "The Main Findings of the District Pilot Project of Labour-intensive Road Construction and Maintenance in Botswana and the implicationsfor Similar Projects in South Africa", Development Southern Africa 8, 2 (1991), pp. 149-170. R.T. McCutcheon, "Botswana: A Description of the District R o a d s . . . Programme", Development Southern Africa 9, 3 (1992), pp. 269-294. 50. P.A. Bentall, Ghana: Feeder Roads Project: Labour-based Rehabilitation and Maintenance - Final Report CTP 116 (ILO, Geneva, May 1990). 51. G.A. Edmonds, K. Goppers and M. Soderback, Men or Machines: an Evaluation of Labour-intensive Public Works in Lesotho (Swedish International Development Authority (SIDA), Stockholm, 1986). 52. S. Hagen and C. Relf, The District Road Improvement and Maintenance Programme: Better Roads and Job Creation in Malawi (ILO, Geneva, 1988). 53. Ethiopian Transport Construction Authority (R. Cahoon), Labour-based, Equipment Supported Rural Road Construction and Maintenance in Ethiopia: a Programme Proposal (Rural Roads Department, Addis Ababa, January 1986). 54. The Gambia: Ministry of Works and Communications, Pilot Project of Labour-based Road Maintenance in The Gambia, Project Supervision Department No. 3, August 1987 (ILO, Geneva, 1987). 55. J. Boardman, Mozambique: Project of Labour-based Road Betterment and Maintenance. Final Report (ILO, Geneva, March 1986). 56. R.T. McCutcheon, "Advisory Services in Appropriate Road Construction and Maintenance Technology in Africa RAF/84/MIS/NOR Final Report", mimeo (ILO, Nairobi, July 1987). 57. R.T. McCutcheon and T. Borchgrevink, Mission Report on the Improvement and Maintenance of Rural Feeder Roads in Northern Zambia (NORAD, Oslo, January 1985). 58. IBRD (1986), op. cit. 59. International Labour Organisation (ILO), Employment Incomes and Equality - - a Strategy for Increasing Productivity Employment in Kenya (ILO, Geneva, 1972). 60. Ministry of Transport and Communications, Kenya, Revised Loan Application in Respect of Rural Access Roads Programme (MoTC, Nairobi, July 1975). 61. G.A. Edmonds, personal communications to author (May 1977 and November 1985). 62. Sir Alexander Gibb and Partners "Report on Settlement Roads", November 1968 in IBRD, Kenya Project Completion Report: Rural Access Roads Project (World Bank Transportation Division, Eastern and Southern African Region, Washington, January 22 1986). 63. ILO, "The Implementation of Appropriate Road-construction Technology in Kenya. Report of The MOW/1LO/NORAD Study" (ILO, Geneva, November 1976). 64. de Veen (1980, 1983), op. cit. 65. IBRD (January 1986), op. cir. 66. Government of Kenya, Ministry of Transport and Communications, Project Proposal for Minor Roads Programme (MoTC, Nairobi, January 1985). 67. IBRD (January 1986), op. cit.

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68. S. Hagen, Rural Access Roads Programme Kenya: Analysis of Costs and Productivities (ILO, Geneva, April 1985). 69. J. Rolt, Kenya: RARP Technical Aspects (Transport and Road Research Laboratory, Crowthorne, 1979). ILO (R. Petts), The Maintenance of Rural Roads in Kenya CTP 12 (ILO, Geneva, 1982). Sir Alexander Gibb and Partners, Rural Access Roads Gravelling and Maintenance Study Project Report (MoTC/Gibb June, Nairobi, 1984). 70. IBRD (January 1986), op. cit. 71. R.T. McCutcheon, "The Main Findings of the District Pilot Project of Labour-intensive Road Construction and Maintenance in Botswana and the Implications for Similar Projects in South Africa", Development Southern Africa 8, 2 (1991), pp. 149-170. 72. O. Tveter, personal communication NORAD Resident Representative, to author (1981). 73. T. Borchgrevink, NORAD consultant, personal communication to author (1984). 74. R.T. McCutcheon, District Pilot Project of Labour-intensive Road Construction and Maintenance: Botswana. Final Report CTP 17 (ILO, Geneva, 1983). 75. R.T. McCutcheon, "Botswana: A Description of the District Roads Labour-intensive Improvement and Maintenance Programme", Development Southern Africa 9, 5 (1992), pp. 269-294. 76. K. Solberg, D.A.N. Nteta and T. Tessem, Project Review LG34 District Roads (NORAD, Oslo, May 1990). 77. Ibid. 78. The Minister of Local Government and Lands, quoted in J.G. Strandenaes and R.T. McCutcheon, Roads: Labour-intensive Road Construction, a NORAD Financed Development Project (NORAD, Oslo, 1986), p. 8. 79. R.T. McCutcheon, "Kenya RARP: Problems and Shortcomings", unpublished paper for post-graduate course, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, (1988), 30 pp. R.T. McCutcheon, "Botswana DRIMP: Problems and Shortcomings", unpublished paper for post-graduate course, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, (1988), 45 pp. 80. R.T. McCutcheon, The Use of Donkey-drawn Carts in Labour-intensive Road Construction in Botswana CTP 57 (ILO, Geneva, February 1985). The reasons for including this research were described in R.T. McCutcheon "Donkey-drawn Haulage in Labour-intensive Road Construction", Appropriate Technology 11, 4 (1985), pp. 28-30. 81. R.T. McCutcheon, "Labour-intensive road construction in Africa", Habitat International 13, 4 (1989), pp. 109-123. R.T. McCutcheon, "Labour-intensive Construction and Maintenance in Africa", The Ovil Engineer in South Africa 32, 11 (1990), p. 487. Coukis, (1983), op. cit 82. R.T. McCutcheon, "Labour-intensive Road Construction and Maintenance: the Implications for South Africa of Other Sub-Saharan Experience", Developing Countries: Civil Engineering and Transportation Convention, Financing and Managing of Road Resources, Vol. 4c (Organizing Committee SAICE ATC88, CSIR Pretoria, 1988), pp. 31-22. 83. R.T. McCutcheon, "Employment Creation in Construction in South Africa: The Potential and the Problems", Annual Transportation Convention 1993, Vol. 3b, Labour-based Construction (ATC, Pretoria, June 1993) pp. 1.1-1.41. 84. S.B. Solinjani, S.D. Sadoro, M,Y. Addae and M. Vunguvungu, The Transkei Labour-based Access Roads Construction and Maintenance Programme Main Findings (UNITRA Bureau of Development Research and Training, Umtata, June 1989). R. Geddes, Guidelines: Road Layout for Developing Communities. Literature Review, Technical Report RTV/21 (CSIR NITRR, Pretoria, 1985). R. Little, "Labour Intensive Road Construction in the Valley of a Thousand Hills", Annual Transportation Convention, CSIR, Pretoria, Vol. 2A (CSIR, Pretoria, 1987). 85. R.T. McCutcheon and B. Veldman, "Tribal/Rural Access Roads: the Development of an Institutional Framework of Labour-intensive Road Construction and Maintenance", Tenth Annual Transportation Convention 1990, CSIR Convention Centre, Third World Issues, 3C Papers (ATC, Pretoria, August 1990), pp. 8.1--8.16. 86. R.T. McCutcheon and R. Little, "Practical Guidelines for the Establishment of a Rural/Tribal Capacity to Construct and Maintain Roads by Labour-lntensive Methods", Annual Transportation Convention 1991 Developing Areas 4D (ATC CSIR, Pretoria, 1991), pp. 2.1-2.19). 87. C. Ware, Engineer, Kwazulu Department of Works, personal communication to author (1993). National Economic Forum: Technical Committee on a Public Works Programme (NEFTC), National Employment Creation Programme for the Provision of Public Infrastructure Using Labour Intensive Methods (National Public Works Programme) Pre-investment Investigation: Initial Overview Report (NEF, Johannesburg, February 1994a). 88. McCutcheon and Veidman, (1990), op. cit. 89. J. Croswell, "Labour-based Construction at Ilinge, Republic of Transkei", Labour-intensive construction: Practical Details for Success 31 October and I November 1989 (University of the Witwatersrand Department of Civil Engineering/Continuing Engineering Education (CEE), Johannesburg, October 1989), 14 pp. S. Phillips, D. Meyer and R.T, McCutcheon, "Employment Creation, Poverty Alleviation and the Provision of Infrastructure: Lessons from the Labour-based Construction of Municipal Services in Ilinge", Urban Forum 3, 2 (1992), pp. 81-113. 90. J Croswell, "Proposal for the Construction of Certain Works at Soweto Using Labour-based Methods", September 1987, included in readings for Labour-intensive Construction: Practical Details for Success 31 October and 1 November 1989 (University of the Witwatersrand, Department of Civil Engineering/CEE, Johannesburg, October 1989), 14 pp. 91. R.B. Watermeyer (ed.), Contractor Development in Labour-based Construction (The Contractor Development Team, Johannesburg, 1992). 92. R.B. Watermeyer, "Community-based Construction", paper presented at the SAICE/SARF Symposium on Labour-intensive Construction, Midrand, 25-26 March 1993. R.B. Watermeyer, "'Community-based


R. T. McCutcheon

Construction: Mobilising Communities to Construct their own Infrastructure", paper presented at the XXlst International Association of Housing Science (IAHS), World Housing Congress, Cape Town, South Africa, May 1993. N. Band, "Community Based Housing Development", paper presented at the XXlst International Association of Housing Science (IAHS), World Housing Congress, Cape Town, South Africa, May 1993. R.B. Watermeyer and N.G. Band, "Implementing Community-based Civil and Electrical Engineering Construction Projects", unpublished paper (September 1993). 93. T. Loots, "Report of Practical Experience in Labour-intensive Construction", Labour-intensive Construction: Practical Details for Success 31 October and 1 November (University of the Witwatersrand, Department of Civil Engineering/CEE, Johannesburg, October 1989), 4 pp. 94. Phillips et al. (1992), op. cit. 95. R.T. McCutcheon, "A Strategy for Increasing the Use of Local Resources in the Development B a n k of South Africa (DBSA) Programme with Particular Emphasis Upon the Potential for Productive Employment Creation", mimeo (DBSA, Midrand, March 1989.) 96. S. Phillips, "The Viability of Reintroducing Waterbound Macadam as a Base Course for Roads in South Africa Using Labour-based Construction Methods", unpublished MSc (Eng.) Project Report, Department of Civil Engineering, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, (1992). S. Phillips, R.T. McCutcheon and D. Meyer, "The Viability of Re-introducing Water-bound Macadam as a Base-course for Roads Using Labour-based Methods", Annual Transportation Convention 1991, Vol. 4b, Pavement Engineering (CSIR), Pretoria, 1991), pp. 2.1-2.18. 97. S. Phillips, "Theoretical Analyses of Labour-intensive Construction of Waterbased Macadam Roads", unpublished PhD Thesis, Department of Civil Engineering, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, (1994). 98. National Economic Forum: Technical Committee on a Public Works Programme (NEFTC), National Employment Creation Programme for the Provision of Public Infrastructure Using Labour Intensive Methods (National Public Works Programme) Pre-lnvestment Investigation: Report of the Technical Focus Group (Co-convenors R.T. McCutcheon and S. Phillips). (NEF, Johannesburg, April 1994). C. Pintusewitz, S. Phillips and R.T. McCutcheon "Cost Technique Analysis: A Study of the Relative Costs of using Labour-intensive and Machine-intensive Techniques to Construct Urban Bus Routes." Unpublished report prepared for the Development Bank of Southern Africa by the Research Centre for Employment Creation, mimeo, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, (1993). 99. McCutcheon (June 1993), op. cir. pp. 12-30. 100. F.V. Viljoen et al., Evaluation of the South African Special Programmes for Creating Employment, Research Report No. 8, DBSA, Sandton, 1987). Kritzinger-Van Niekerk (1991), op. cit. 101. See for example: P.A. Pienaar, M.S. Phupheli and A.J. Pienaar, "A Comparison of Management Approaches on labour-intensive Projects", Annual Transportation Convention 1993, Vol. 3b, Labourbased Construction (ATC, Pretoria, June 1993), pp. 2.1-2.19. 102. C. Cook, M. Beenhakker and R. Martwig, Institutional Considerations in Rural Road Projects, World Bank Staff Working Papers Number 748 (World Bank, Washington, 1985). 103. State President F.W. de Klerk, Speech to Parliament, Cape Town, 29 April 1991. 104. S. Phillips, M.R. Greyling and R.T. McCutcheon, Labour-intensive Road Construction Funded from the Sale of Strategic Oil Reserves: the Vital Issues. Project Report PR 93/780 (Department of Transport, Pretoria, May 1993). 105. M. Greyling, "A Critical Review of Labour-intensive Road Construction Financed from the Sale of Strategic Oil Reserves", unpublished MSc (Eng) dissertation, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg (1995), forthcoming. 106. Employment Task Force, "National Employment Creation Programme for the Provision of Public Infrastructure using Labour-intensive Methods of Construction. Draft Proposal for Pre-investment Work", unpublished mimeo, (National Consultative Forum on Drought, Johannesburg, February 1993). 107. Employment Task Force, Guide for the Planning of short-term Labour-Intensive Employment Creation Programmes (National Consultative Forum on Drought (now National Rural Development Forum), Johannesburg, May 1993). 108. National Economic Forum: Technical Committee on a Public Works Programme (NEFTC), (February 1994), op. cir. National Economic Forum: Technical Committee on a Public Works programme (NEFTC), National Employment Creation Programme for the Provision of Public Infrastructure Using Labour Intensive Methods (National Public Works Programme) Pre-lnvestment Investigation: Proceedings of Workshop, February 10 and 11 1994 (NEF, Johannesburg, February 1994). National Economic Forum: Technical Committee on a Public Works Programme (NEFTC), Pre-investment Investigation: Report of the Technical Focus Group (Co-convenors: R.T. McCutcheon and S. Phillips) (NEF, Johannesburg, April 1994). National Economic Forum: Technical Committee on a Public Works Programme (NEFTC), Final Report (NEF, Johannesburg, June 1994). 109. J. Radebe, Minister of Public Works, Press Release National Public Works Programme (Ministry of Public Works, Pretoria, 4 August 1994). 110. National Committee for Labour-intensive Construction (NCLIC), The Search for Guidelines on the Appropriate Use of Labour-intensive Methods in Construction. Proceedings of the Seminar held at the University of Cape Town, 14 April 1992 (NCLIC, Cape Town, April 1992). 111. R.T. McCutcheon, "Setting the Scene", in NCLIC, ibid. 112. W. Vance, "Towards a Policy for Developing Labour-intensive Construction", in Outlook for Construction: a Mini-seminar to Address Construction Opportunities and Strategies in the Year Ahead 9 September 1992 (BIFSA, Midrand, 1992). 113. NCLIC-COSATU-South African National Civics Organisation (SANCO), The Framework Agreement for Public Works Projects using Labour-intensive Construction Systems (NCLIC-COSATU-SANCO, Johannesburg, 22 June 1993).

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114. It should be noted that this whole process marks a departure from most of the developments elsewhere in Africa. Except in Ghana, where private contractors are being used, the other major programmes are based upon the use of public-sector supervision of casually employed labourers. While there is a great deal of public-sector construction in South Africa (planning, supervision and construction) the Framework Agreement was initiated by the private contractors who usually bid for that work which is put out to tender by the public sector. 115. The Framework Agreement is in the process of being formally incorporated into the National Public Works Programme (December 1994). 116. Hagen (April 1985), op. cit. 117. Coukis, (1983), op. cit. 118. A National Public Works Programme has now been initiated. It is housed in the Ministry of Public Works (Radebe (1994), op. cir.). Progress on Reconstruction and Development, Weekly Mail, 23 December 1994, p. 5. 119. S. Phillips, P. Delius and R.T. McCutcheon, "Guide for the Planning of Short-term Labour-intensive Employment Creation Programmes", Development Southern Africa, Vol. 12, April 1995.