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Provinces
Apr 23 2012 9:39AM
 
Unemployment hinders service payments
CLEAN SERVICE: Gauteng needs to get clean audits for the next two years. Photo by LERATO MADUNA
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Siyabonga Mkhwanazi

Faced with a number of problems, municipalities in Gauteng are battling to get a clean bill of health, but the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) wants these municipalities to achieve clean audits in the next two years.

Following a visit to the province last week by the NCOP, delegation head Pinky Mncube said yesterday they had identified a number of problems that needed to be fixed by these municipalities by 2014.

Mncube said while the municipalities had not been getting clean audit outcomes, they needed to turn around their situation and improved their financial performance.

The NCOP had visited the City of Johannesburg, Midvaal, Mogale City, Randfontein and Emfuleni municipalities to monitor their performance in terms of service delivery.

They found that at Emfuleni there was a 45% unemployment rate, which in turn impacted on the payment of services to the municipality.

Mncube said given the high unemployment rate in the area the indigent policy must be implemented by the municipality in order to exclude those who could not afford to pay for services.

On the visit to Midvaal they found an informal settlement that had been in existence for many years with no sanitation and other services. The people of Mamello would be relocated to a new site by the end of next month.

In Emfuleni, Mogale City and Randfontein they discovered there was a problem of payment of services. In addition, they found that companies that were awarded tenders did not complete their projects, she said.

The three municipalities also faced the problem of overspending and unauthorised expenditure, she said, adding that there was the overreliance on consultants by these local councils.

These were some of the things the municipalities needed to work on to improve their financial performance to be able to get clean audit opinions.

Mncube said in the City of Johannesburg the auditor-general had raised concerns relating to the property rates revenue, which results in overbilling.

The city had a problem of proper record keeping, said Mncube.

Johannesburg had lost extensive material through criminal conduct of its employees.

In the supply chain management there was non-compliance with laws and regulations, she said. There were a number of interventions they were putting in place, which included among others a forum led by Premier Nomvula Mokonyane and mayor Parks Tau.

It is in this forum they will detect problems early and make the necessary interventions.

siyabongam@thenewage.co.za

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