Technical problems down eGazette system

Kimberly Guest
By Kimberly Guest, ITWeb contributor
Johannesburg, 19 Feb 2021

The Government Printing Works (GPW) has admitted its eGazette publishing system is experiencing technical “challenges”.

This has resulted in a delay in the publishing of scheduled national and provincial gazettes dating back to 5 February. During this period, the department has only been able to publish national extraordinary gazettes relating to existing legislation and an invitation for comments on the Disaster Management Amendment Bill.

National gazettes impacted by the system difficulties include the tender bulletin, all legal gazettes, national regulations, road carrier permits and liquor licences. Provincial gazettes, both normal and extraordinary, were also impacted during this period. GPW has, however, in the last few days, published extraordinary gazettes for the Gauteng and North West provinces and yesterday published the first normal KwaZulu-Natal gazette since 21 January.

Numerous attempts to contact GPW over the last two weeks have been unsuccessful, with e-mails going unanswered, calls to the main switchboard unable to connect and calls to the eGazette contact centre sitting in the queue for hours without being answered.

The Government Communication and Information System, which posts government documents and information to the South African government Web site, sent an e-mail to subscribers yesterday acknowledging the many enquiries it had received. It noted it had also made enquiries with GPW but was still awaiting feedback.

Temporary system

GPW acting GM of operations and production Sihle Ngubane says in a statement to customers that technicians are working around the clock to resolve the challenge.

“We have put in place a process of implementing a temporary alternative processing system, which will be used until the publishing system is fully restored. Updates will be provided in due course, as progress is made in this regard. During this period of implementing the temporary alternative system, customers are requested to obtain manual quotations from the GPW contact centre. It should furthermore be noted that under the temporary processing system, there will be no automated feedback messaging, but please note that GPW does receive the e-mails,” he said.

He also noted the manual process will only be in place while GPW works on resolving the problems with its publishing system, and will cease to function when the system is restored.

The statement declared that provincial gazettes will be published on the GPW Web site from 15 February onwards, while scheduled National Gazettes will be published as from 19 February.