[Foss4g2008loc] FW: [OSGeo Africa] South African government freeand open source software policy

Andre Schoonbee andresch at iway.na
Thu Oct 11 06:21:15 EDT 2007

Hi Gavin


You did register us on the Africa list didn't you. I understood that you
had. If not, I need to register!







From: foss4g2008loc-bounces at lists.osgeo.org
[mailto:foss4g2008loc-bounces at lists.osgeo.org] On Behalf Of Gavin Fleming
Sent: Thursday, October 11, 2007 8:13 AM
To: foss4g2008loc at lists.osgeo.org
Subject: [Foss4g2008loc] FW: [OSGeo Africa] South African government freeand
open source software policy


For those of you not on the Africa list, see the latest on SA's Open Source





From: africa-bounces at lists.osgeo.org [mailto:africa-bounces at lists.osgeo.org]
On Behalf Of Kate Lance
Sent: 10 October 2007 05:28 PM
To: OSGEO-Africa
Cc: SDI-Africa
Subject: [OSGeo Africa] South African government free and open
sourcesoftware policy


Can someone give me an indication of how the South African government free
and open source software policy affects (or will affect) geospatial software
procurement (and government supported software-development)?    

If the policy does (or eventually will) extend to geospatial software, then
how will those making procurement decisions judge whether proprietary
software is "significantly superior" or not (has SITA prepared
criteria/guidelines for such evaluation)?


<http://www.apc.org/english/rights/africa/?apc=he_1&x=5193463> &x=5193463

South African government free and open source software policy

October 6, 2007: The Chief Technology Officer of the South African State
Information Technology Agency (SITA), announced the launch of the
government-wide free and open source programme at the GovTech conference
held early September. While many welcomed the February announcement of
government's intention to adopt and promote open source software, the
subsequent months saw disillusionment within the open source community that
very little had actually happened. Sita's Daniel Mashao addressed these
worries, describing what had been happening behind the scenes and showing a
systematic timetable of how this process will indeed be implemented. He
outlined the government's policy. The five key points are: 1) Choose FOSS,
2) Migrate to FOSS, 3) Develop in FOSS, 4) Use FOSS/open content licensing,
and 5) Promote FOSS in South Africa. Under the policy, when introducing new
software, the SA government will implement open source solutions unless a
proprietary option is demonstrated to be "significantly superior". In any
instances where proprietary software is implemented, reasons must be given
to justify its use. Migration of current systems is also planned. This will
be done in a phased approach, beginning with applications such as replacing
MS Office with Open Office or KOffice and replacing Internet Explorer with
Firefox. This will in time lead up to the operating system, replacing
Windows with a Linux distribution. Migration to Apache for the running of
government websites has already occurred within a number of departments. All
new software developed for or by the government is to be based on open
standards and licensed under an open source licence where possible. 


See: Policy on Free and Open Source Software use for South African
Government - approved by Cabinet on 22 February 2007,
http://www.oss.gov.za/FOSS_OC_POLICY_2006.pdf   <http://www.oss.gov.za/> 



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