Athol Trollip, mayor of the Nelson Mandela Bay metro. File picture

Port Elizabeth - The Nelson Mandela Bay (NMB) metro will on Monday begin using the Municipal Standard Chart of Accounts (MSCOA) - a highly advanced accounting system - to tackle fraud and corruption,  Mayor Athol Trollip has announced

"This adds yet another line of defence, through accountability and transparency, against corruption and fraud," Trollip said in a statement.

He said the NMB coalition government was committed to turning the metro into a well-run city, where residents "once again" trusted those in office. 

"As one of the first major steps in respect of improving financial management and accounting, I insisted on a flawless MSCOA implementation that is reliable and complies with every deadline," said Trollip, who is a member of the Democratic Alliance (DA).

He said the administration had delivered on this thanks to the joint efforts of mayoral committee member (MMC) for budget and treasury Retief Odendaal, MMC for corporate services Dean Biddulph, and numerous senior staff. 

As one of the first metros to implement and begin transacting using the MSCOA, the administration had set an important standard for the rest of the country. 

"All MSCOA test submissions of budget data to National Treasury came back error free last week. This confirms alignment and integration of the municipality’s MSCOA implementation with that of National Treasury," explained Trollip

"Transparency and accountability are non-negotiable for this government, values which MSCOA is designed to achieve. First gazetted into law in 2014, MSCOA has required massive internal data migration and a total overhaul of all accounting systems. 

"This government wants to see our municipality at the front of the pack, leading by example in the delivery of excellent services, the eradication of corruption, and the world-class management of finances." 

In a separate statement, DA Eastern Cape spokesperson Mlindi Nhanha congratulated the NMB coalition government for leading the way towards stopping corruption.

Nhanha said the MSCOA  served as a "crucial firewall against corruption and significantly improves transparency and accountability".

"Transparency and accountability are non-negotiable where the DA governs," said Nhanha, adding that the DA wants to lead the charge to stop corruption. The DA said it also wants to deliver better services and create jobs.