Procurement in the South African public service : a reflection of the ethical and legislative framework

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Peer-Reviewed Research
  • SDG 16
  • SDG 12
  • Abstract:

    This paper presents the issue of ethical conduct in the procuring of public goods and services. Procurement in the public sector operates as a business function of an economic activity within a political system. Procurement is also a management function carried out by the public official. Although there is legislation to guide the ethical conduct, with reference to the procuring of goods and services required by the public sector, there is still the increase in corruption. The question thus arises what could be done to prevent corrupt activities. Based on the research conducted, it may be reported that the function of procurement of public goods and services is susceptible to corruption due to large amounts of public funds that are involved. It is a complex environment where public procurement integrity, ethical standards, best value for money and the style of corruption jeopardize the ability of governments to achieve their developmental agendas. Ethics goes beyond the prevention of corruption, fraud and misconduct as modern societies expect public servants to serve the public interest and to serve in a rational and efficient manner.