The perception of the community of Lichtenburg regarding communication and service delivery by the Department of Home Affairs
Dontso, Motlagomang Ellen
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The purpose of this study was to assess perceptions of the Lichtenburg community regarding service delivery and communication by the Department of Home Affairs (DHA) in The Lichtenburg municipality. A structured questionnaire was used to gather data from a sample of 80 respondents. The questionnaire consisted of four sections that the respondents were to answer. The study revealed that DHA officials in Lichtenburg are trained, that they adhere to the Bathe Pele Principles, are good communicators and that they also maintain high ethical standards. Officials also have access to the necessary equipment, and have the necessary time and support to render services to the public. Although there are some shortcomings among officials - such as the absence of name tags, office cleanliness and the unfriendliness among some officials - respondents are still happy to conduct business with the DHA in Lichtenburg. Some of the shortcomings identified can be addressed within a short space of time, such as consistently wearing name tags. Addressing other shortcomings, such as the provision of human resources, will require the attention of the top ranks of government leadership, who will need to incorporate these into their planning processes. In general, the DHA in Lichtenburg is trying its best to render efficient and effective services to its clients. The study found that the public knows what is expected from the DHA when they require its services, and they are able to express these views freely. The DHA interacts with the public on a daily basis in rendering essential services such as the issuance of identification documents, passports, birth, marriage and death certificates; and its clients cannot obtain these anywhere else. Consequently, it is essential that the DHA maintains high ethical standards. It is important for the DHA to provide regular training and workshops to help its employees to keep abreast of new developments. This will help to ensure that the department maintains a high level of service delivery. The study's findings should serve as a guide to measure the performance of other DHA offices. It is recommended that regular studies of this nature be conducted to help identify any gaps in service, and to address them accordingly.