Journal of Public Administration - Volume 47, Issue 2, 2012
Volumes & issues
Volume 47, Issue 2, 2012
Author M.J. MafunisaSource: Journal of Public Administration 47, pp 428 –430 (2012)More Less
It is almost three years that I have been the editor of the Journal of Public Administration. This June 2012 edition is the last one under my editorship. The time to pass the baton has arrived. I am humbled by the trust of those who believed in me, when a decision was made that I should take over the editorship of the Journal. I am greatly grateful that, with the support of our outstanding Editorial Board and Committee of leading scholars in the field, I could provide the leadership that elevated the stature of the Journal to where it is now. This achievement is a collective one. The Tshwane University of Technology (TUT), as the host of the Journal, provides an amazing administrative support. Its head of the Department of Public Management, David Mello, has always been behind us all the way. He gives us all the necessary support for the efficient running of the Journal.
Author S.M. MadueSource: Journal of Public Administration 47, pp 431 –442 (2012)More Less
The legislative branch of government is responsible for law making, exercising oversight over the executive, facilitating public participation and promoting cooperative governance. Legislatures are mandated to ensure that laws passed are properly implemented to address the needs of the citizens. This is a crucial role of legislative oversight. In order to legitimise this important role of the legislatures, some conditions must be met. For example, there needs to be a certain degree of cooperation between the branches in policy making (each side must be willing to bargain and compromise in order to get some policy benefits), the legislature must have some capacity to monitor the executive, and the executive needs to be willing to comply with legislative enactments. In this article, it is argued that these conditions have not always applied in the legislative arena. Since legislative oversight is viewed as a key agency of democratic legitimacy, the article recommends a tightening of the oversight mechanisms employed by the legislatures. The article is grounded on the following definition of oversight: "the review, monitoring and supervision of government and public agencies, including the implementation of policy and legislation". It examines the complexities of the oversight role of legislatures in the quest for balancing power relations between the legislatures and the executive.
Author N.S. MatsilizaSource: Journal of Public Administration 47, pp 443 –452 (2012)More Less
In the last decade in South Africa, participatory budgeting analysts have debated the merits and deficiencies of diverse methods to strengthen municipal public budgeting. The aim was to involve citizens not only in the planning processes, but also in the budgeting decisions that would inform the implementation of local government policies and projects, while meeting the developmental needs of the people. This article discusses two issues: how participatory budgeting (PB) is applied and the challenges of implementing Participatory Budgeting methods in South Africa. It also calls for inclusive participatory budgeting in local governance, whereby previously marginalised and excluded groups are given the opportunity to influence public decision making in allocating resources. The main focus of this article, in examining the experiences and challenges in practising PB, includes the context of PB; the application of PB in South Africa using various methods; the challenges experienced in the implementation of PB in the country; implications for service delivery; and conclusions and recommendations. The article recommends and proposes a workable approach towards the implementation of PB to enhance effective service delivery, with some contributions towards a framework for good governance, and municipal service delivery in South Africa.
Source: Journal of Public Administration 47, pp 453 –469 (2012)More Less
The question that directs the discourse in this article is whether an incremental housing process is a viable option to deal with the challenge of housing in South Africa. Its contention is that this process of self-driven housing is, to a very great extent, a viable solution to the housing crisis. It reduces the housing needs of especially those in the rural areas who are unable to secure mortgage bonds because of the complexities of the tenure land security system built on the traditional communal rights, while their income levels disqualify them from benefitting from low-cost free subsidised houses. This argument is based on the findings of the study, Revisiting the incremental housing process as a policy implementation tool for accelerating housing delivery: A study of selected rural areas in South Africa, Sakane Mokgadinyane completed in 2012. The study was designed to create a better understanding of how poor rural households have been able to improve their housing conditions in the past, in line with the principles of sustainable human settlements. It assessed the extent to which the Rural Housing Loan Fund has implemented its mandate in certain areas in accordance with its mandate of providing rural poor households with credit solutions to build or extend their homes incrementally. This article uses the findings of the study, as referred to above, to authenticate the authenticity of the contention that the incremental housing process is a viable option for South Africa.
Customers' perceptions of the work performed by the internal audit functions (IAFs) in the public sector : a case of the National TreasuryAuthor N. MotubatseSource: Journal of Public Administration 47, pp 470 –485 (2012)More Less
In South Africa, the scope of the internal audit functions (IAFs) in public sector organisations is limited by the government's mandate of service delivery. The IAF is obviously expected to support the government's strategies. In the same way, the IAF is expected to deliver services and advise its customers on the efficiency of the operations in terms of risk, control and governance processes. In many instances, the National Treasury plays a significant role in designing the guidelines to support the IAFs in the public sector. In this article, the IAFs are treated as an instrumental tool of audit committees, executive managers, programme managers and external auditors. IAFs play a significant role in advising and supporting the government's vision in meeting pre-determined targets with a view to addressing service delivery issues. The question that directs this article is, how is the IAF perceived by those that should benefit from it? An attempt to answer this question draws from the findings of the research I conducted in the National Treasury. The purpose of that research was to generate an in-depth understanding of the perceptions of those that should benefit from the IAF in terms of how they find this function in their interface with it. It is expected that the data generated from this exercise would assist in developing the necessary IAF guidelines to improve the performance of this function.
Citizen perception of service quality : an exploration of client satisfaction of service levels within selected national departments in South AfricaAuthor E. DraaiSource: Journal of Public Administration 47, pp 486 –499 (2012)More Less
Clients hold experiences and perceptions from their service encounters and interaction with the public services. The service quality is judged either good or bad, or the client might be indifferent. Public sector reform measures and management strategies have been implemented that give effect to citizens as clients of the public service. Policy frameworks such as the White Paper on the Transformation of the Public Service of 1997 set the framework for the quality of public service that South African citizens can expect. The citizens, as clients in the South African developmental context are expected to be responsive in terms of service needs; they are required to define, influence as well as express levels of satisfaction or dissatisfaction with service quality. The objective of this article is to contextualise the relevance of and criteria for service quality in the public service, which aims to inspire confidence in citizens. Two service quality models will be analysed with the aim of focusing on the functional quality and organisational image that stem from experience and perception with service quality. The second aim is to review the findings of the satisfaction survey conducted by the Public Service Commission in 2010 by reflecting on three national departments.The findings of the study conducted reveal that clients were generally satisfied with the public services experienced. The analysis of the findings will identify the gaps in client satisfaction with service quality. Finally, gap analysis will lead to recommendations for improved client satisfaction with service quality.
Author M. MpinganjiraSource: Journal of Public Administration 47, pp 500 –517 (2012)More Less
Most mainstream government departments are now using the Internet as a channel to provide public services to their citizens. This often entails large financial investments on the part of government. Use of such services by targeted users is seen as critical in helping to justify the large investments as well as to ensure that the intended benefits of e-government from the users' perspective are realised. The main objective of this article is to investigate perceived challenges to the diffusion of e-government services targeted at citizens in South Africa. Data was collected using a structured questionnaire and a total of 380 usable responses were received. The findings showed that members of the general public perceive that there are many challenges affecting the diffusion of e-government services in South Africa. These included, in order of importance, awareness, trust, service quality, access and skills-related challenges. Efforts aimed at ensuring increased diffusion of e-government services among ordinary citizens need to take cognizance of these factors and find ways of addressing them. The article has outlined some recommendations on what government can do to address the challenges.
Source: Journal of Public Administration 47, pp 518 –531 (2012)More Less
The Constitution of the Republic of South Africa stipulates guidelines for local government functions. Section 152, of the Constitution lists six objectives of local government. According to the six objectives, local government is required to promote social and economic development for its communities. In South Africa, this objective is met through urban renewal projects, among others. Urban renewal is an economic engine and a reform mechanism for the growth and development of local government. Urban renewal projects comprise of Economic Empowerment Zone (EEZ) programmes. In Soweto, EEZ is delivered by the City of Johannesburg (CoJ) through the Department of Economic Development. Ten EEZ programmes were initiated in the CoJ. These programmes are designated by law that focuses on historically under-developed areas. The programme aims to empower poor persons, particularly the Small, Medium and Micro Enterprises (SMMEs) to become self-sufficient. The programme package includes job creation and resources and business opportunities for the most economically distressed areas of South Africa. In Soweto, the programme aims tofoster increased investment, business formation and business expansion. Globally, unemployment is one of the most important challenges facing poor people. The promotion of SMMEs has become an objective across government departments in a developmental state. Urban renewal projects have their successes and failures. This article evaluates the EEZ programme and the perceptions of the beneficiaries in Soweto. Theoretical analysis and empirical surveys will be conducted. A series of recommendations will be offered towards increased performance of EEZ programmes.