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Edward West | 20 November 2023

The SA National Roads Agency Ltd (Sanral) yesterday said it might conclude an interim procurement policy in the next few days and it assured stakeholders of its commitment to expedite wealth creation among black business, and that every effort would be made to cut the construction cake more equitably.

Sanral recently hosted the last of countrywide engagements on its proposed Interim Preferential Procurement Policy (PPP).

The consultation engagements started in Cape Town on October 31 and concluded in Pretoria on Friday.

Stakeholders also gathered at satellite venues in Ngwenya Lodge, Klerksdorp, and King’s Palace, Rustenburg in the North West.

The objective was to inform stakeholders of the reasons for its withdrawal of the Preferential Procurement Policy, which was adopted in May 2023, and to consult stakeholders on the proposed Interim PPP, a statement said yesterday.

“This will be used to adjudicate tenders until such time as a final policy is adopted,” a statement from Sanral said yesterday.

Sanral CEO Reginald Demana said the roads agency hoped to conclude the Interim PPP “in the next few days”, so that work could be put out to market.

“Our plan is that hopefully by the end of next week we will have consolidated all comment and input to conclude the interim policy. We are working hard, in parallel with our teams, to make sure we are able to get adverts into the market this year still,” he said.

Issues raised by stakeholders included project participation opportunities for small, medium and micro enterprises (SMMEs), the need for more aggressive transformation of the construction industry, concerns about the so-called construction mafia and other organised crime formations, as well as skills development and training to allow SMMEs increased access to developmental opportunities.

Demana said transformation was a contentious issue in the country, especially considering that the economy was not growing, which meant economic opportunities were limited, and competition for limited opportunities was very high.

“Those who are already in the sector have built up their businesses and are doing very well, declaring massive dividends and making their shareholders very happy. But those who want to enter the sector, who see an opportunity and want to come in to participate are finding it hard. It’s a difficult balancing act but one which we cannot afford not to address head on, otherwise the sector will end up in trouble,” said Demana.

He encouraged interested parties to submit written comments on the proposed Interim Preferential Procurement Policy by midday tomorrow.

‘Disclaimer - The views expressed here are not necessarily those of the BEE CHAMBER’.


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