The Department of Public Service and Administration has responded to an erroneous article published by a Johannesburg based business technology media house-ITWeb.

In a statement aimed at correcting the errors insinuated in the article published by ITWeb on Tuesday, April 4, 2023, the DPSA said it noted the misleading article with concern.

In setting the record straight from the news article with the headline: “DPSA Bypasses SITA” departmental Communications Director, Mr Moses Mushi said the distinctions that apply in the procurement of ICT goods and services in the public sector, namely, “mandatory” and “non-mandatory” processes and procedures, respectively determine whether procurement should be through the State Information Technology Agency (SITA) or is decentralised to departments.

“The tender which ITWeb referred to falls under the “non-mandatory” ICT procurement route and since its inception, the same procedure has been followed without any fault found by the Auditor-General.

“The tender was therefore advertised in compliance with the relevant procurement regulations and procedures. The department urges ITWeb to exercise due diligence in reporting on government activities to avoid misleading the public and causing unnecessary confusion. It should also be noted that the DPSA was not contacted for comment before the story was published,” he said.

According to Mr Mushi, the SITA Act states that departments must use SITA for mandatory services and may request the agency’s optional services or use the SITA transversal contracts.

He further said that all public entities are allowed to make use of SITA transversal contracts. “A department may engage directly with prospective suppliers based on a user requirement specification approved by the department. In the BID specification published by the department, under the mandatory documents, it has been mentioned that the service provider must provide evidence that they are registered under SITA Transversal Contract 1183/2013,” he said.