The exercise of a public power or the performance of a public function is governed by, and judicially reviewable in accordance with, the rule of law. Administrative action is also judicially reviewable if it is not lawful, reasonable and/or procedurally fair. This ensures significant accountability and transparency vis-à-vis the State in South Africa.
In addition to the possibility of approaching a court for judicial review there are other legislative protections offered to the public, including the rights to written reasons, access to information and sound public financial management.
The way that the State procures goods and services is particularly well regulated. This must be done in accordance with a system that is fair, equitable, transparent, competitive and cost-effective. These principles hold the State to high standards which ensures competitive bidding processes; fair treatment of tenderers; and value for money.
The South African legal system also makes allowance for a form of preferential procurement. Organs of State are required to conduct their procurement processes by allocating certain preference points to bidders, ensuring that tenders are evaluated on price and the bidders' black economic empowerment status. There is also the possibility that preference is given to bidders who meet certain local production and local content requirements.
Public-private partnerships have become relatively common in South Africa. The procurement procedure for public-private partnerships must include a transparent, competitive bidding process and an evaluation of bids which ensures that they offer value for money.
“Organs of state are required to conduct their procurement processes by allocating certain preference points to bidders, ensuring that tenders are evaluated on price and the bidders' Black Economic Empowerment status.”
For a comprehensive document outlining the implications of this area of law in South Africa