Young SA engineers should be paid more – Magubane

17 July 2015

Young South African engineers should be paid as much as merchant bankers if the country wants to stop them from heading into more lucrative fields or seeking work opportunities abroad, says Engineering Council of South Africa (ECSA) council member and former director-general of the Department of Energy Nelisiwe Magubane.

“We can invest as much as we like on young engineers and then they become merchant bankers. ECSA has a role to play to ensure we promote the engineering profession to ensure we keep our engineers here.”

Magubane said that the power sector, in particular, needed to try to match the salaries paid by the banking sector. She said a shortage of engineers meant that many municipalities went without the technical know-how and leadership needed in the energy field.

Magubane, who is also chairperson of Matleng Energy Solutions, said registered engineers should be technical directors in municipalities. She also called on Eskom to do more to make it attractive for engineers to work at the power utility. 

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