ANC should learn financial management from the DA, says Outa

ANC should learn financial management from the DA, says Outa

Durban - Unlike the ANC-led government, the DA in Western Cape has people with the right skills and good attitude towards managing public funds, said Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (Outa) chief executive officer Wayne Duvenage.

When delivering his 2018/2019 annual audit report in the National Assembly on Wednesday, Auditor-General Kimi Makwetu revealed that  the Western Cape had scored 74% of good governance followed by Gauteng with 70% and KZN with 52%, while the rest had achieved less than 50%. The lowest score of 12% came from Northern Cape.  

“The DA has put people with the right skills into financial management, they have adopted an attitude of taking good governance seriously,” said Duvenage.

Makwetu revealed on Wednesday that the country had incurred irregular expenditure of R62.6 billion of which R51 billion was incurred last year. 

Duvenage said in Western Cape government officials were measured according to their performance in financial management.

“There are consequences if you don’t do it properly and you will lose your job if you don’t perform, which is missing in these other provincial governments,” he said. 

He said under the ANC provincial governments there were systems in place to deal with defaulters but they were not utilised. 

“It is political interference and a lack of will for people to be disciplined and be removed. The reality is that there needs to be consequences, which should start at the top.

“We say to Cyril Ramaphosa ‘start taking action against various department heads and cabinet members’. He should put the pressure on the finance people,” he said.    

University of Western Cape political analyst Professor Bheki Mngomezulu blamed cadre deployment in the ANC-led governments. He said the DA administration was investing all its effort in setting the trend in order to “appear to be the most efficient”.

“This issue of cadre deployment also has a negative impact in some instances where people are deployed only to find that they don’t have the requisite skills to execute their mandate,” he said. 

Mngomezulu said the ANC lacked consequence management as “when some leaders are found to have failed to execute their responsibility and there is no recourse for that”. 

He said the DA had a larger pool of knowledgeable people to deploy to government. 

“The ANC has eight provinces and the pool of people with the requisite skills is small, but then you have to deploy them to all these provinces therefore you end up deploying all these people who don’t have the necessary know-how,” said Mngomezulu.    

KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sihle Zikalala, whose province had regressed by increasing its irregular expenditure up to R12.4 billion from previous financial year’s R9.8 billion, said he would take action against departments that failed to adhere to the law.

“We will intensify the Operation Clean Audit drive and this will entail ensuring consequence management and accountability to all departments that incurred irregular, fruitless and wasteful expenditure

“We will also launch an investigation in order to nip all malpractices that lead to poor audit outcomes in the bud,” said Zikalala.

In April Parliament approved the Amended Public Audit Act, which give Makwetu powers to hold defaulters accountable. 

Makwetu told SAFM listeners he would through the act hand over cases of financial mismanagement to Special Investigating Unit for further investigation.

The ANC spokesperson did not respond to questions sent to him.