South Africa

South Africans kiss government services goodbye

A new Stats SA report has found that South Africans are turning to the private sector for services previously offered by the state due to corruption, maladministration, and a lack of trust.

Statistician-General Risenga Maluleke said in the 2022/23 Governance, Public Safety And Justice Survey that people are using fewer government services now than they did in 2019/20.

Around 38% of individuals aged 16 years and older used public transport services, around 32% used public clinic services, and only 18% used the South African Police Services (SAPS). 

The results showed that the proportion of individuals who rated government services as satisfactory exceeded those who rated them dissatisfactory.

However, the proportion of individuals who rated government services as satisfactory declined in 9 out of 12 government services between 2019/20 and 2022/23.

Individuals aged 16 years and older residing in metro areas used public transport and clinics more than those in non-metro areas.

On the other hand, those in non-metro areas used SAPS and the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) more than those in metros. 

The level of trust in 10 of the 15 government institutions declined between 2019/20 and 2022/23. 

Levels of trust were highest for public school institutions and lowest for local government. It was higher in those who used services than those who did not use services, except in the case of SAPS.

In addition, a higher proportion of individuals indicated that they were asked to pay a bribe by a traffic official in both 2019/20 and 2022/23. 

Less than 5% of the individuals reported that they were asked for bribes by traffic officials (2.0%), police officials (1.1%) and traffic centre officials (1.0%).

On average, less than 1% of the individuals paid a bribe.

Source: Stats SA

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