OPINION

Investigation needed into non-paying municipalities- Kevin Mileham

DA says impending electricity cuts across SA should be viewed as national crisis

DA requests Auditor-General investigation into mismanagement at non-paying municipalities

17 January 2017

The DA will request that the Auditor-General, Thembekile Makwetu,  launches an independent investigation into the gross mismanagement of funds at municipalities that have failed to pay Eskom in the Northern Cape, Eastern Cape, Mpumalanga, North West and Free State.

This is in accordance with Section 5 (1) (d) of the Public Audit Act.

The DA will also request that these municipalities launch urgent investigations into the mismanagement of funds, in accordance to the Local Government: Municipal Finance Management Act (LG-MFMA) and bring the guilty municipal managers to justice.

Section 65(2) (e) of the LF: MFMA places an obligation on the accounting officer of the municipality to ensure that all money owing is paid within 30 days of receipt. Deliberate or negligent failure to do so constitutes financial misconduct in terms of Section 171 of the LG: MFMA. Subsection (4) thereof, together with the LG: MFMA Regulations, requires that such misconduct be the subject of extensive investigation and disciplinary hearings.

The impending electricity cuts across South Africa should be viewed as a national crisis. Hundreds of thousands of South Africans will be left without the power they need for basic services, including health care.

Small and large businesses will also have no choice but to shut their doors, weakening the local economy and resulting in many job losses.

It is time that decisive action was taken. This can only be done when we finally hold those in the ANC accountable for their blatant disregard for the people’s money. Our public representatives must honestly serve the people, and must always act in their interests.

This is something the DA will always do where we are elected to govern, now and in the future.

Issued by Kevin Mileham, DA Shadow Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, 17 January 2017