Analysis of the procurement process at office of the Premier and Department of Finance in the North West Provincial Government
In this study, the procurement processes of the Office of the Premier and the Department of Finance Economy and Enterprise Development were analysed. Public procurement is one of many government functions, and the procurement system can be prescribed in the national constitution, like in South Africa (Thai, 2012). The importance of government procurement in South Africa is illustrated by the fact that it has been afforded constitutional status. The Constitution stipulates that when the government contracts for goods or services, it must do so in accordance with a system which is fair, equitable, transparent, competitive and cost effective. These five principles are therefore laid down to apply to the mechanisms and procedures employed by the government when it contracts for goods or services (Bolton, 2007). Procurement process is central to the national government in South Africa. The goods and services bought by national government in South Africa represent a large amount of public money, and it is very crucial that national government put in place measures to manage the way in which these goods and services are acquired. There is a huge need for the redistribution of income and opportunities to the historically disadvantaged individuals. To redress the situation, the South African government has shown an interest in the development and sustainability of small, medium and micro enterprises. The primary objective of this study is to analyse the procurement processes of the selected government departments, and identify the procurement problems facing these departments. Data from eight questionnaires completed by respondents, representing two provincial departments, was collected and analysed. This study found that the selected departments are facing challenges in managing the procurement process, and these challenges relates to implementation and compliance of the policies and regulations. The most important conclusions drawn from the study show that the selected departments face challenges in the implementation of the preferential procurement requirement; there is non-compliance to procurement procedures; and there is corruption and lack of capacity and relevant skills in the implementation of the procurement procedures as prescribed in the procurement act. These conclusions could be used to recommend ways to improve the departmental procurement processes. Recommendations were made on how to improve the procurement system and compliance with the policies and regulations.