[OSGeo Africa] Help prevent DRDLR and other government entities from deviously renewing their ESRI ELAs

Nhamo, Luxon (IWMI-South Africa) L.Nhamo at cgiar.org
Wed Sep 11 23:24:02 PDT 2019

Good day

Great contribution Luncedo. Moreover, we leave in a world of competition and refusing competition only brings one’s downfall. I do not understand why always seeking protection of the law, yet there changes taking place.


From: Africa <africa-bounces at lists.osgeo.org> On Behalf Of Luncedo Ngcofe
Sent: Thursday, 12 September 2019 08:05
To: Africa local chapter discussions <africa at lists.osgeo.org>
Subject: Re: [OSGeo Africa] Help prevent DRDLR and other government entities from deviously renewing their ESRI ELAs

External Sender

Morning all

Here is my view with regards to the topic above:

·         The Open source champions should start at tertiary institutions in assisting with the implementation of use of open source software. This will create required soldiers which will form part of the government decisions in the future.

·         One of the advantages of the licenced software is the 24hrs service agreement should the user have any challenges with the software. I believe there is not guarantee availability for this for free open source software. This is where the open source should also bridge the gap as this have major impacts on government workflows should the project not solved on time.

·         One should also investigate workflow systems of government organisations in order to provide open source as a potential long term solution. Without this knowledge then it would be difficult to proposed an open source software as a solution. In this case one would need to investigate why is DRDLR preferring a licenced software. Does the open source offer the workflow capabilities for such a Department?

·         The commercial software companies once in a while visits the Departments and assesses how they can offer advance products than their competitors and do studies how would such transformation impact on the production flow of the government and thus how would they assist if such a change would take place. All this information therefore forms part of decision making towards a desirable software to use as an organisation.

·         My suggestion would be for open source compatriots to embark on such practical studies and therefore be on the stable ground when pushing for large consideration of open source software in government institutions.

·         On small scale projects, the open source software is used by government organisations.

Kind Regards
Luncedo Ngcofe

From: Africa [mailto:africa-bounces at lists.osgeo.org] On Behalf Of Zoltan Szecsei
Sent: Thursday, 12 September 2019 07:19
To: africa at lists.osgeo.org<mailto:africa at lists.osgeo.org>
Subject: Re: [OSGeo Africa] Help prevent DRDLR and other government entities from deviously renewing their ESRI ELAs

Hi Gavin/List,
This 'rant' has been around for decades (OK, maybe singular, not plural), yet it has always been in the form of an open rant, and not a direction.

As a community we have always championed user groups etc, with a handful of people making the effort, and everyone benefiting.
This is the norm, and I see it no different (in manpower effort and 'split') from energy required for past endeavors. (So no-one should be scared of getting involved).

I would like to suggest a way forward.
But this is strictly about getting Open Source to have a fair look-in, and not about the specifics of any tender or purchase.
My support is for leveling the playing field, and for exposing/wiping out badly constructed Bid specifications.

If my suggestion is bad/useless/whatever, I hope at least it does cause some debate that might turn into direction.

Perhaps you could do some initial research, maybe applicable laws or policy guidance documents.
Perhaps listers working in government can point to some relevant documents on this matter.

Then find some legal-minded person to cost out a strategy, and of course make a 'feasibility of success' statement.
After that, we could have a worthwhile direction.

With a feasible direction we could try some crowd funding - or maybe even just have to make some representation (through SAGI??) to some government body with the power to change things.

I am still playing in the sand out here (Qatar), so cannot offer to help, but providing we have a direction and a crowd funding platform, I will pledge R1000 to further this cause.

Anyone else with some ideas?

On 2019/09/11 14:43, Gavin Fleming wrote:

If you have the time and energy, I invite you to help do something about this thinly veiled attempt at renewing the DRDLR ESRI ELA, when they are expressly not allowed to. They are supposed to go to open tender and consider alternatives and in particular, FOSS alternatives.

This is one of many attempts by government entities to bypass official procurement procedures and simply renew their ESRI ELAs (Same goes for Oracle and other proprietary vendors). Most I’ve come across, like Drakenstein municipality and Ekurhuleni and Joburg Metros, are finding or have found means to do this without even tendering (for example by invoking sole supplier status or abusing the SITA ‘framework agreement’) . In this case DRDLR is going out to tender, but it is hardly open nor fair (just read it!)

Then you get municipalities like Molemole illegally requesting named products in tenders and worse, giving the market minimal time to respond:

"COR 8/1/1/09: Molemole Municipality is hereby inviting quotations from service providers to render a service of supply, delivery, installation and configuration of ArcGIS licenses. Specifications: 1. Level 2 Term License; 5 user Pack; 2. Level 1 Term License; 10 User Pack; 3. Service Credits; 1 Block (1000 Credits); 4. Map (1); Drone 2 Map for ArcGIS Term License. Please note that this quotation was published late.”

Or Mandeni:

"13/19/20: Quotations are hereby invited from suitably service providers to supply and deliver of Software Licenses as per the following specification: • ... • ESRI Software maintenance renewal End User No: 307570"

SAGI, CSI, SITA, GISSA, Practitioners, Competition commission? Why are we allowing this anticompetitive and unaffordable practice to continue, especially in light of the current economic and political climate in SA?



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Zoltan Szecsei GPrGISc 0031

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