A drawback for the administration of procurement practices in the South African
public sector is a negative side-effect which undermines the public’s confidence
in the procurement environment. Public procurement is the nexus between the
public and private sectors and also vulnerable to procurement fraud and corruption.
In the public sector where goods and services are funded by public
expenditure, taxpayers have reasons to be concerned over public procurement as
tax paying community. The question thus arises as to whether the administration
of procurement practices is underpinned by value for money, ethics, competition,
transparency and accountability in the South African public sector. Explaining the
reasons for this, demands greater awareness of the public sector procurement
environment and its challenges in the South African environment and beyond.
This article therefore examines the manifestation of unethical procurement practices
which traces non-compliance with legislation, uncompetitive bids, awards
to employees and family members, and accepting less than three quotations,
inadequate contract management and internal control, leadership, as well as irregular expenditure.