The Private Security Industry Regulatory Authority (PSIRA) is planning to form a professional body that will cover and represent the electronic industry as a whole. This includes the electrical fencing industry as well.
This move by PSIRA comes after an independent effort by electrical contractors or individuals, the Electric Fencing and Components Manufacturers Association (EFCMA) and others to form a professional body for this industry. Exploratory meetings were held in mid-July 2014, including participation from the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) and the Department of Labour (DoL). The process was driven by the chairperson of EFCMA, Cliff Cawood (securitysa.com/49735N).
What remains as a concern though, is whether the proposed professional body for the private security industry will also represent the electronic sector. Do electronics professionals want to be dumped in the same bucket as the security industry and vice versa? In addition, why was this body announced shortly after the independent body was promulgated in 2014?
According to Mpho Mofikoe, deputy director: Communications, Registration (CRM) and Training at PSIRA, “We will be forming a private security professional body which will include the electronic sector. The authority has had extensive interactions with the electronic sector on the topic. Our approach is to have a professional body that is inclusive of the entire private security industry and which consist of sector boards representing all stakeholders.
“At our meetings with the electronics sector during January and March 2015, they were receptive to our concept because it is inclusive of the entire industry. We will be engaging more with the sector during our planned Securex workshops.”
The issue is still up in the air as the question of how the proposed professional body will be formed. There are two ways in which a professional body can be registered: within the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA), or external to the organisation by a parliamentary decree.
Once this is known and the relevant markets understand how PSIRA wants to proceed, the industry can then involve itself and comment or complain about the process.
SAQA was unable to comment at this stage, but the organisation’s website contains a document on the policy and criteria for recognising a professional body (http://www.saqa.org.za/docs/guide/2012/policy_2008.pdf).
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