The National School of Government recently ran an Ethics Workshop for the Board Members of the Universal Service and Access Agency of South Africa (USAASA) to discuss the contents of the Protected Disclosures Act. USAASA is established in terms of Section 80 of the Electronic Communications Act 36 of 2005 (the ECA) as a statutory body with a sole mandate of promoting the goal of universal access and universal service to Electronic Communications Network Services (ECNS), Electronic Communications Services (ECS) and Broadcasting Services (BS).

The Agency is an administrative arm of the Universal Service and Access Fund (USAF), which is established through Section 87 (1). The strategic mandate of the Fund is to provide grants for the construction and extension of the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) infrastructure in underserviced areas, and also to give subsidies to needy persons towards the cost of ICT. Minister of Telecommunications and Postal Services has been instructed by the Public Protector (PP) to conduct in-depth training on the Protected Disclosures Act.

As part of the remedial actions to be implemented the PP indicated that National School of Government as well as the Department of Public Service and Administration run an in depth training session for all newly appointed Board members of entities that fall under his authority on the Protected Disclosure Act- in particular its purpose, effect and meaning to employers prior to taking office

The workshop was held at the Fortis Manor Hotel in Hatfield and facilitated by Dr Salomon Hoogenraad from DPSA and Advocate Henk du Preez from the Department of Constitutional Development and Justice.