n Journal of Public Administration - The political / administrative interface : time for reconsideration?

Volume 10, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0036-0767



The roles of political office bearers and appointed officials have been studied and described since Woodrow Wilson's famous article was published in 1887. The relationship between a minister and the managerial cadre of a department is probably one of the most complex issues related to the public sector operations. The paper describes the effects of the political structures in a democratic country with special reference to South Africa. Thereafter attention is devoted to the influence of politics in governing a country with a diverse society having to eradicate legacies of the past. The administrative / managerial functions are briefly alluded to. This is necessary to identify the respective roles of the politicians and the appointed officials and to clarify the interface. It is argued that the interface is not present in only the public sector, but also in the corporate sector. Therefore, the proposed in the King Report should also be followed in the public sector. This recent developments also indicate that the clear distinction that used to be made between the public and the private sectors should be revisited. The result could be that the interface between the political office bearer in charge of a public institution and the senior managers of a department has to be reconsidered.

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


Article metrics loading...


This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error