By Adriana Randall MPL, DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Finance:
Gauteng’s open tender system is nothing more than a catchphrase for finance MEC Barbara Creecy, with very little evidence of it being as open as claimed.
During a DA debate in the Gauteng Legislature over cross-departmental sharing of information regarding the details poor performing contractors, MEC Creecy argued this would not be necessary as the transparency stemming from the open tender system would thwart this problem.
However, the open tender system has thus far been less than open.
Since its initial launch, at the Cedar Road upgrade and the subsequent Provincial Banking tender, little public information has been made available around its existence.
Navigating the website is cumbersome, incomplete documentation is stored in obscure places and timelines are left open-ended.
For the tenders that are available, MEC Creecy has been asked to provide names, qualifications and declarations of interest for members of the bid adjudication and evaluation committees.
To date, this information has been stonewalled with the MEC sighting “confidentiality” as the reason for not indicating who these committee members are.
If the system is to be as open and transparent as residents of Gauteng are to be led to believe – then why shroud the process in secrecy?
Or is this tender system another initiative that has been tainted to favour a few well connected individuals?