Cogta MEC visits wasteful metro to address financial irregularities

Eastern Cape cooperative governance and traditional affairs (Cogta) MEC Xolile Nqatha is in Nelson Mandela Bay for talks with the leadership of the municipality following financial irregularities cited in the auditor-general’s latest report.

The municipality recorded R19.2-billion in irregular expenditure, according to the report. The auditor-general also found that another metro in the province, the Buffalo City metropolitan, also posted R2.6-billion in wasteful expenditure.

The news of wasteful expenditure comes as the Nelson Mandela Bay municipality is battling water crisis.

Nqatha will hold talks with the executive mayor, members of mayoral committees, finance (budget and treasury offices) and engineering services.

Nqatha said in a statement that his office is authorised by the constitution to monitor, support, and strengthen the capacity of municipalities.

“My brief is to engage our leadership on their plans to attend to matters of UIFWE [fruitless and wasteful expenditure], as well as non-spending on conditional grants,” said Nqatha.

“We are mandated by the constitution to monitor, support and strengthen the capacity of municipalities to manage their own affairs, to exercise their powers and perform their functions.”

He added that the auditor-general has noted that most municipalities in the Eastern Cape have also not taken reasonable steps to prevent and avoid the escalating wasteful expenditure, and that no consequence management has been initiated by municipalities.

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