In 2013 National Treasury created the new structure of the Office of the Chief Procurement Officer (OCPO) to combine all Treasury functions in terms of public procurement.
Since late 2013, Prof Geo Quinot of APPRRU is assisting the OCPO in establishing the legislative mandate informing the work of the OCPO. The project involves the following elements:
- development of a comprehensive overview of the legislative framework governing public procurement in South Africa with a particular focus on the role of Treasury and potentially the OCPO in terms of particular statutes;
- gauging the current levels of compliance with public procurement rules;
- the interaction between public procurement law compliance and service delivery;
- a comparative study of similar oversight structures in other systems and
- recommendations on possible reforms to the public procurement regulatory framework.
The phased project was completed by mid-March 2014 when a final report was delivered. The report can be downloaded here.
The key recommendations of the report were:
- Split regulatory and operational procurement functions at central government level.
- Realign the current regulatory functions of the OCPO into a new dedicated procurement Regulator by means of dedicated legislation.
- Ensure functional autonomy of the new Regulator.
- Create an enforcement arm under the new Regulator.
- Retain central procurement operations within National Treasury.
- Assign the mandate of large-scale procurement regulatory reform to the new Regulator.
Quinot is continuing to advise the OCPO in the drafting of legislation required to implement the recommendations of the report.