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Johannesburg – The Portfolio Committee on Water and Sanitation notes further disturbing media reports on financial challenges pertaining to the Department of Water and Sanitation.

The reports allege that the Water Trading Entity related to the Department has an overdraft of around R3.5 billion and is unable to account for about R654 million on its books.

This is subsequent to the committee’s concern on the persistent media reports especially in relation to the department’s control of its financial resources appropriated by parliament.

The minister and the department have, however, assured the committee over a number of meetings that the financial affairs of the department are in order.

While the committee has accepted the guarantee by the department, it will move with speed to investigate the recent reports.

Its stance is that taxpayers’ money must be used in a responsible manner as per the laws of this country.

Furthermore, the non-payment of services by municipalities and water boards has long been a concern for the committee.