Port Elizabeth - The DA laid criminal charges on Tuesday against the mayor, municipal manager and legal advisers of the Ikwezi municipality in the Eastern Cape.

The African National Congress-led municipality oversees the Jansenville, Klipplaat, and Waterford area.

Ikwezi Democratic Alliance councillor Johnny Lewis laid the charges under the Municipal Finance Management Act for unauthorised, irregular or fruitless and wasteful expenditure, DA MPL Dacre Haddon said in a statement.

The municipality had gone into bankruptcy under the watch of mayor Sizwe Mngwevu, he said.

“The Auditor General has issued the municipality with a disclaimer for the 2012/13 financial year,” Haddon said.

According to Haddon, the AG's findings were that the municipality's current liabilities exceeded its total current assets by R16.3 million.

“There has been unauthorised expenditure of R2.1m plus an additional R2.5m that was not disclosed due to overspending of the budget... ,” he said.

Among other discrepancies, officials failed to submit quarterly reports on the municipality's financial affairs. The Ikwezi municipality, however, said it knew nothing about the criminal charges.

“We don't know anything about that. We haven't heard anything yet,” spokesman Andile Damana said.

Questioned on the AG's findings, Damana said he could not comment on them until they had been tabled to council.