The Auditor-General’s (AG) report presented to the North West Provincial Legislature’s Standing Committee on Public Accounts (SCOPA) this week revealed that the Madibeng Local Municipality shamelessly squandered public funds on items such as AMC Cookware, DSTV and clothing accounts.
The unprecedented misuse of public funds by this entity can no longer be ignored. The DA will continue to apply pressure to ensure that the exact amounts and names of individuals involved are disclosed for criminal charges to be laid with the SAPS.
The 2018/19 AG report further indicated a disclaimed audit opinion for the fourth consecutive year.
In addition to paying its finance staff complement a monthly salary, R35 million was spent on financial consultants and yet no progress towards improved audit outcomes have been forthcoming.
Despite multiple Section 139-interventions by the Provincial Government and various investigations into the bankrupt state of this entity, the Municipality continues to wallow in the mud of maladministration, corruption and poor service delivery.
The Municipality failed to disclose the R1 billion loan owed to Public Investment Corporation (PIC) in its financial statements. Only after a court judgment, the debt with interest accumulating over decades was acknowledged. The Municipality is yet to stipulate what the loan was spent on and what the repayment plan is.
The people of Madibeng deserve more than talk shops and inaction. Drastic steps towards consequence management, which ought to include the dismissal of accounting officers, is needed to restore services to the community.
All DA-governed municipalities received clean or unqualified audits and the recent motion of no confidence in Mark Willemse, the former Mayor of the DA-led Knysna Local municipality over poor governance, reaffirms the DA’s stance on clean governance and consequence management.