The Gauteng Department of Sports, Arts, Culture and Recreation (SACR) is lagging behind in terms of complying with the requirements of the national government policy which compels all South African government departments to implement an Open Source Software across all aspects of their operations.
According to a written reply to the DA’s questions tabled in the Gauteng Provincial Legislature, the SACR MEC Faith Mazibuko indicated that the Gauteng City Region, together with e-Government has only developed a draft Open Source Roadmap.
There are no timelines on when this draft will be presented and no investigations have as yet been conducted on how they tend to implement the Open Source Software.
It seems like the MEC is undermining the importance of the Open Source Software in benefitting our people.
The Open Source Software is flexible in its use and cost effective.
Through the use of Open Source Software the Gauteng Government will save money on licensing, software procurement, support and upgrades, and that money could be used to improve service delivery.
The Open Source Software also promotes technological development and the support of local developers who can offer ICT solutions for use in the public sector.
Furthermore, the MEC has admitted that Gauteng libraries do not have local language software packs.
The department has not conducted any investigations with regards to the implementation of local language software in Gauteng libraries.
This indicates that the ANC-led Gauteng administration cares little about the need for the promotion of local languages.
We will continue to pressure MEC Mazibuko to ensure that the Open Source Software and local language software is implemented in all Gauteng libraries.
The DA believes that the Open Source Software will help to bridge the economic and social inequality gaps with regards to the access and use of information and communication technologies.