Progress has been made to deliver services equitably to all South African citizens. The NP has played a constructive role in this process and has served in the governmental structures that rolled out these services. Examples are in the areas of basic service delivery such as:
- Housing, where 8 million people received houses since 1994.
- Health, where the NP led Western Cape province took the lead in providing
antiretrovirals to combat HIV/AIDS.
- Education, which has seen the functional literacy of South Africans rise from 63%
in 1994 to 80%;
- and the provision of clean water and new electricity connections. In this respect,
the majority of South Africans are now better off than before.
These positive service delivery developments do not mean that there is no room for improvement, though. In fact, there are many areas in government service delivery which are found wanting, and the NP is also concerned with dropping standards in many areas of the civil service. Effective and efficient service delivery requires constant attention to enhance continuous improvement. The NP is not only in favour of the delivery of services, but the delivery of quality services.
Areas identified by the NP that need attention, and which we, through our participation in government decision-making, will prioritise and attend to, in order to ensure that South Africa works for you and that you get your fair share, include:
- the use of cutting edge technology, which will, by eliminating delays in service
provision and decreasing the number of cases of fraud, corruption and
maladministration, ensure the enhancement of service delivery and the
transformation of Government into a modern, user-friendly service;
- the use of modern technology to bring services to the people and make them
more accessible, e.g. cellular and satellite technology, enabling certain social
services e.g. grants and pensions to be delivered in deep rural areas and the use
of banking facilities instead of long queues;
- an audit of the systems of Government to eradicate duplication and fragmentation
of services. Modern technology can be used to remove all unnecessary
paperwork, bureaucracy and red tape. The NP would also urge smart card
technology to ensure that e.g. your ID, driverís license, voterís card, child grant
and social pension can all be contained in a single smart card. The use of
such technology can also contribute to the campaign to get all South Africans
to comply with tax legislation, thereby ensuring that the financial burden for
service delivery is more equitably and fairly distributed, and that tax dodgers
that are currently falling through the net at the expense of loyal and law-abiding
taxpaying citizens, are drawn in;
- streamlining civil service through better intergovernmental cooperation to provide
the full spectrum of services and conveniently and centrally located points Ė one-
stop service centres;
- the improvement of government infrastructure through proper maintenance and
progressive expansion, as well as rationalising the infrastructure and ensuring its
optimal use. An audit of all government property must be undertaken with a
view to ensure that no government infrastructure stands unused given the shortages
of this country, and that buildings found to be unsuitable are sold to the private sector.
The NP is committed to ensuring effective service delivery implementation, and believes that the following will help to get South Africa working for you, ensuring that you get your fair share.
Service delivery policy should aim at transformation in the form of service delivery improvement rather than perceptions of transformation that enhance false equity at the expense of excellence and productivity. We agree with the Constitutional principles of equity and affirmative action based on professionalism and merit. We stand for, and will govern towards a professional, well-trained, service orientated public service that should improve service standards based on performance measurement and management. There should come a time when, through a sunset clause, appointments to the public sector should be on merit for all South Africans.
The public sector and service should be structured and managed in such a way that it can deliver services productively. This can be achieved through:
- rightsizing the public service and improving public sector performance through
continuous performance management and improvement, driven by high standards
and staffed by competent and well-trained public servants;
- properly integrating and empowering the local government sphere to deliver basic
services. Sometimes local government jurisdictions such as Unicities are too large
for effective service delivery, and in other cases the capacity of local government is
too weak to provide services. This should be remedied through structural and
dynamic organisational development;
opportunities for the private and community sectors to become
Political and public oversight over service delivery institutions should be strengthened and enhanced through:
- proper use of the Constitutional oversight bodies such as the Public Protector,
Auditor General, courts and Parliamentary and local representatives to enhance
service delivery rather than being abused for party political purposes;
decisively and strictly with any form of potential or real
- accepting and encouraging the role of the media as watch dogs over the public
- educating and assisting citizens to make proper use of public services as well as
to know their constitutional rights in this regard.
The leadership and management of public service delivery institutions should be professional and standard driven and not be based on political loyalties or affiliations.
The NP will promote the above strategic and balanced approach to get South Africa working for you, ensuring that you get your fair share.