Open tender system rolled out to all Gauteng departments

Sebokeng - The Gauteng provincial government is committed to ensuring openness and transparency with regards to tender processes and will be rolling out the open tender system to all its departments.

“We are now extending this transparent system of appointing service providers to all departments, especially those with big budgets,” Gauteng Premier David Makhura said on Monday during his State of the Province Address in Sebokeng.

The open tender pilot project was launched in November 2014 to promote the transparency of the procurement process to award bids through fair competition in while ensuring compliance with supply chain management rules and regulations.

Premier Makhura said the approach has attracted considerable public attention and widespread review, including by the National Treasury and other provinces.

“I truly believe we can use procurement policy to achieve genuine black economic empowerment in all sectors without bribery and corruption,” he said, adding that Gauteng was striving to become a corruption free province.

“We are implementing an integrity management framework to deter fraud and corruption. We have been taking decisive disciplinary action against people found guilty of financial misconduct.”

Ntirhisano programme

With regards to service delivery, the Premier said the Ntirhisano programme has stabilised the province and has changed the way government works.

He attributed Gauteng’s decrease in service delivery protests - from 21% to 15% in the past 12 months - to the Ntirhisano programme.

“The launch of Ntirhisano has turned around the mood in communities in an unprecedented manner. Through a proactive and participatory approach to problem-solving, we are restoring levels of trust and public confidence on the ground.”

He committed that “Team Gauteng” will continue to spend more time on the ground solving problems with communities, unblocking delivery of infrastructure projects and getting the economy working for all.

Clean audits

About 19 of the province’s departments and agencies, including the Office of the Premier, achieved clean audits in the 2014/15 financial year.

Only one department, the Department of Health, and one agency, G-Fleet, achieved unsatisfactory audit outcomes.

“The leadership of the department have been placed on very strict performance terms to fix our public healthcare system,” said the Premier.

The province has committed to changing the leadership of G-Fleet for repeatedly obtaining negative audit outcomes – from adverse to a disclaimer in two consecutive years.

“Similar action will be taken where departments and agencies show serial poor performance. There shall be consequences for poor performance and unethical conduct. We mean business.”

Most of the province’s departments spent 99% of their infrastructure budgets, which Premier Makhura said, was commendable given the history of underspending on infrastructure.

The province will also deal with departments who do not pay service providers on time.

According to data, 10 out of 14 departments achieved 90% compliance with the payment of service providers within 30 days.

This has been attributed to digitisation of invoicing.