KZN Cogta MEC Nomusa Dube-Ncube has warned that councillors will be held responsible for wasted spending.
Durban - KwaZulu-Natal co-operative governance and traditional affairs MEC Nomusa Dube-Ncube has warned councillors in the province that they will be held personally responsible for their municipalities' fruitless and wasteful spending on their watch, her department said on Sunday.

Dube-Ncube issued the warning on Friday at the Royal Showgrounds in Pietermaritzburg where most of KwaZulu-Natal's 1846 councillors gathered together with municipal officials for the relaunch of the provincial back to basics programme at the start of the new term of local government, the department said in a statement.

Dube-Ncube believed that every cent of ratepayers' money lost through fruitless and wasteful expenditure by councils where councillors deliberately chose to neglect their oversight role should be actively recouped from those councillors as a way of managing consequences for such blatant dereliction of duty.

“The back to basics programme is clear that municipalities must focus on their core mandate which is to provide services to communities. This includes developing and maintaining key infrastructure. Each council must ensure oversight over every cent and that all decisions are in line with the legislative framework that governs local government,” Dube-Ncube said.

The summit saw mayors from all of KwaZulu-Natal sign the back to basics pledge, which included key undertakings such as the delivery of basic services, good governance, public participation, sound financial management, and institutional capacity in their respective municipalities.

“One of the things that negatively impact on our municipalities' service delivery performance and long-term sustainability is the councils' failure to plan adequately and to invest in their own internal capacity so that they would not have to rely on outside consultants,” said Dube-Ncube.