“Public participation is the process by which Parliament and Provincial Legislatures consult with the people and interested or affected individuals, organisations and government entities before making a decision. It is a two-way communication and collaborative problem-solving mechanism aimed at achieving decisions that are more acceptable. Other terms that are sometimes used include ‘public involvement’, community involvement’ or “stakeholder involvement”
The purpose of public participation is to:
- Obtain the views of the public on policy, legislation and other processes to enrich the decision-making processes of public institutions.
- Impart knowledge to communities about governance and government matters that affect them so that the pace and relevance of service delivery is improved.
- Obtain information about the experiences of the people with regards to service delivery and government action so that relevant institutions can take the necessary action to bring about change.
Public participation remains central to the mandate of the sector, and remains vital to deepen democracy. Members of the legislative sector have an obligation as public representatives, to facilitate public involvement in legislative processes.