Municipalities rein in wasteful spending but ‘irregular’ expenditure soars

Auditor General Kimi Makwetu.

The Auditor-General of South Africa says irregular expenditure has increased by just over 50% since the previous year to R16‚81 billion‚ in the 2015-16 municipal audit.

Fruitless and wasteful expenditure was 21% lower in 2015-16 than in the previous year at R901 million.

Eighty 2% (40) of the municipalities with clean audit opinions in the previous financial year (2014-15) obtained this outcome again.

The report covers audits from a total of 263 municipalities and 51 municipal entities.

“We have been painting the picture of lack of consequences for a number of years‚” the AG’s office said on its Twitter account.

“Municipalities have been notified of risks associated with some of these weaknesses.”

Basic principles of accountability‚ themed around strong internal control and good governance‚ must be in place in order to succeed‚ it said.

The AG report noted that “not a single municipality in Gauteng has been qualified“. It also highlighted the Western Cape (80%)‚ KwaZulu-Natal (18%) and Eastern Cape (16%) as those provinces that are ahead of the others in terms of clean audits.


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