Auditor General applauds Mogale City

mogale city sign

The Auditor General Thembekile Kimi Makwetu visited Mogale City to find out how the municipality achieved a clean audit.

Makwetu accompanied by his entourage including Deputy Auditor General Tsakani Ratsela, visited the city as part of his municipal road shows in a move to understand and analyse the financial situation of municipalities across the country.

While emphasising the role of his office, Makwetu gave Mogale City senior managers a pat on their shoulders for a job well done in obtaining a clean audit. The visit by the AG follows the municipality’s clean audit for the 2013/ 2014 financial year.

Makwetu expressed concern regarding the large number of municipalities and entities that are unable to produce financial statements without outsourcing to consultants to prepare financial records on their behalf.

He said the consultants can be assets in determining the flaws in a project, however, it also could be a major contributor to overspending.

“The AG must audit and report on the accounts, financial statements and financial management of government institutions. We are impressed highly by the level of governance in Mogale City and hope that we would be able to learn from the way this municipality has done its work,” Makwetu said.

Leading the City’s delegation was Municipal Manager Dan Mashitisho, accompanied by members of the executive committee (Exco) including the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Leslie Mahuma and the Chief Operation Officer (COO) Abe Mbulawa.

Mahuma and Mbulawa gave a composite reports on the projects and programmes the municipality undertook as well as the challenges the city is facing. Mahuma gave an account of the financial status of the city as of 2006.

He indicated that the appointment of Mashitisho gave Mogale City a new lease of life. He said prior to the appointment of the executive team, Mogale City was experiencing a backlog in preparing the annual financial statements.

Mahuma gave a multipart report ranging from the City’s “turnaround approach, financial turnaround, organisational and financial best practices”. Mbulawa added and gave an account of “performance turnaround and overview, performance and compliance best practices, compliance turnaround and overview to governance turnaround and internal audit and audit committee overview”.

The highlight of the presentations was the announcement that Mogale City uses internal staff members as well as interns to prepare and produce financial statements; a move the Auditor General applauded.

Mashitisho gave a brief report on the status of the municipality. He indicated that the success of Mogale City is as a result of sustainable working relationship between the administrative wing and the politicians.

While applauding the City officials and politicians for a job well done, Mashitisho also raised concerns on issues ranging from institutional memory, load shedding to staff retention. He indicated that municipalities lose valuable staff members due to inflexible and strict legislation.

Mashitisho indicated that the recent high levels of load shedding and ageing infrastructure have a severe impact on the economy of the municipality. He said with the much-anticipated Metropolitan City in 2016, the West Rand must gear itself for a total overhaul of its infrastructure as Mogale City and its sister municipalities are growing.

In his closing remarks, the Auditor General acknowledged the journey navigated by the municipality. He said the clean audit indicated the high level of transparency and accountability within the institution.

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