North West wants clean audit: Mabe

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The North West government is implementing a financial management improvement programme for municipalities, acting premier Louisa Mabe said on Tuesday.

“We expect an improved performance and audit outcome in the next audit cycle as a result of the steps we have taken to support our municipalities,” she said.

The programme was intended to assist municipalities with sound financial management to attain clean audits by 2014.

The first phases of the programme had started with the sourcing of 16 service providers who had already been deployed to the municipalities in order to assist them with the preparation and submission of 2011/2012 financial statements which were due for submission on or before August 1.

Tswaing, Moretele, Maquasi Hills, Kgetlengriver, Ventersdorp, Ditsobotla, Mahikeng and Kagisano- Molopo local municipalities were currently benefiting from this initiative.

The second phase of the interventions, which would be much more intense and broad, would entail assisting six municipalities with a comprehensive turnaround strategy and five municipalities within the Ngaka Modiri Molema District with accounting standards.

“It is incumbent upon municipalities to ensure that they appoint staff with relevant skills and put systems in place in order to give delivery of quality service delivery priority,” said Mabe.

She called on municipalities to fire incompetent, unqualified and unskilled employees in the interest of service delivery and their communities.

This followed a damning general report on the Municipal Finance Management Act provincial audit tabled by auditor general Terence Nombebe on Monday.

For the second consecutive year, none of the 24 local municipalities and four district municipalities in the province received a clean audit. The Bojanala Platinum District Municipality and Ratlou Local Municipality received unqualified audit opinions with findings.

The supply chain management, predetermined objectives (service delivery), human resource management, information technology controls and material errors and omissions in the financial statements were five critical areas that the AG identified for improvement. – Sapa

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