North West councils in crisis, says DA
MUNICIPALITIES in North West are 'in a state of financial anarchy'
MUNICIPALITIES in North West are in a state of financial anarchy, the Democratic Alliance said yesterday.
According to Auditor-General Terence Nombembe's report, the 10 municipalities in North West, which were able to provide financial statements, had regressed, the DA's spokesman in the province Chris Hattingh said.
"The information ... indicated that the North West local government crisis has deepened and that the lack of capacity, caused by vacancies and the deployment of incompetent ANC cadres, has led to a state of financial anarchy.
"Even the very expensive appointment of consultants to manage the financial affairs could not succeed to stop the free-falling North West municipalities," Hattingh said.
He said there was an increase of millions of rands in unauthorised and irregular expenditure.
Four of the audited municipalities had spent R114million on unauthorised expenditure and all 10 councils had spent a total of R210million on irregular expenditure, Hattingh said.
This was even more concerning because an investigation in 2009 by the ANC's national executive committee had revealed that the tender system had been subverted to fund factionalism within the ANC in the province.
Prior to the recent local government elections, the ANC had promised to implement a North West local authority turn-around plan, Hattingh said.
"[This] may prove too much for the ANC to handle," he said.
The North West provincial government was unable to comment immediately.