Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba delivering his 2018 Budget Speech, National Assembly, Cape Town. Picture: Elmond Jiyane, GCIS

Johannesburg - Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba has revealed that there has been a large number of deviations in the government's tender system which have led to corruption and abuse.

In his maiden Budget Speech on Thursday, Gigaba promised that government would increase collaboration with law enforcement agencies to curb graft in its tender system, which is at the heart of delivering crucial social services.

"In recent years, a large number of deviations from normal procurement processes has reduced the credibility of the supply-chain management system. Deviations can also result in anti-competitive practices that open the door to corruption, and which limit transformation by preventing small businesses from doing business with the state," he said.

Gigaba said in future deviations would be allowed in "rare, well-justified cases".

In terms of tender regulations, deviations are done in cases of emergency or when a supplier is a sole provider of a service.

The finance minister also committed that next week Treasury would issue a directive to all government and public institutions to pay suppliers on time of be charged with financial misconduct.

"This must be monitored by accounting officers, and National Treasury will strengthen oversight mechanisms in this regard. We will work with colleagues in all spheres of government to improve performance of public entities on this critical issue," he said.

Weaknesses in project preparation, execution and delivery have resulted in lengthy delays and cost overruns of government's social infrastructure in the past decade, Gigaba said, noting the public sector has invested R2.2 trillion in economic and social

"To improve this, government has established a Budget Facility for Infrastructure, to standardize and improve the management of public infrastructure projects," he said.

Political Bureau