Premier urges officials to work for the people

KWAZULU-NATAL Premier Zweli Mkhize has called on his cabinet to be accountable at all levels.

He was speaking at the start of a three-day indaba in Durban yesterday.

The event was attended by members of the executive, heads of departments and senior managers.

Collins Chabane, the Minister in the Presidency, also attended the meeting.

"KwaZulu-Natal must be seen to be accountable to its inhabitants," said Mkhize.

He said his government was concerned at the report by MEC for human settlements Maggie Govender that money allocated to build houses was not used by certain municipalities.

"We are nine months into the new government and it is essential that we reflect on priority areas such as food security, agrarian reform, education, health, the fight against crime and corruption.

"It's worrying to hear reports that there is money lying somewhere in some municipalities and not being used for houses," said Mkhize.

He said it was important that the (provincial) government was seen to be accountable.

"Government needs to be seen to be working with the people.

"We want this government to be seen as being able to execute its tasks and duties with a sense of professionalism," he said.

Mkhize also expressed concerns at reports that there were senior officials who were being awarded tenders from the departments they worked for.

"We are refining a monitoring tool to look at progress in different departments so that each department will be accountable to the required outcome," he said.

He urged all government employees to ensure that finances were well used, adding it was not only the duty of the chief financial officer or heads of departments, but every individual employed by government.