Title: Ethics in South African public administration: a critical review

Authors: Elvin Shava; Adrino Mazenda

Addresses: School of Public Management, Governance and Public Policy, College of Business and Economics, University of Johannesburg, P.O. Box 524, Auckland Park, Kingsway Campus, 2006, South Africa ' Economic Management Sciences Faculty, School of Public Management and Administration, University of Pretoria, P. Bag X28, Hatfield, Hatfield Campus, 0028, South Africa

Abstract: Commissions, for example, Zondo and Mokgoro, have revealed that public administration in South Africa is in a dilemma, because unethical and corrupt acts manifests among public office bearers. This scourge impedes government departments capacity to render public services effectively and efficiently. South African public administration is confronted by multiple obstacles such as the lack of transparency, accountability and efficiency. Government public procurement systems have become a breeding ground for corruption and maladministration. This article argues that a central neglected factor is failure to adhere to sound ethical conduct in the execution of public duties despite numerous government training and development initiatives in this regard in the public sector. Arguably, the new dispensation under the current leadership of President Ramaphosa needs to overhaul the functioning of public organisation, implement sound whistle blowing mechanisms to inhibit corruption and encourage public managers to observe good ethical conduct when serving the public. The implications of this study, therefore, accentuate good principles of governance which includes transparency, accountability and ethics, which are the key determinants for effective public service delivery.

Keywords: ethics; public administration; good governance; public sector.

DOI: 10.1504/IJMP.2021.115107

International Journal of Management Practice, 2021 Vol.14 No.3, pp.306 - 324

Received: 26 May 2020
Accepted: 20 Sep 2020

Published online: 18 May 2021 *

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