by Adv Boitumelo Babuseng, MPL – DA Provincial Spokesperson for Economic Affairs
Date: 16 November 2017
Type: Press Statement
It is clear that the MEC for Finance, Economic Development & Tourism, Mr Mac Jack, lacks the political will to address financial woes in the provincial administration.
It is now time to put our people ahead of politics and to invoke the provisions of section 100 of the Constitution, thereby placing serial offenders of financial misconduct under national administration.
While we congratulate the Northern Cape Provincial Treasury on its clean audit, we must insist that it begins to implement consequences for those departments who continually flout the prescripts of the Public Finance Management Act (PFMA) as though the law is nothing but a mere suggestion.
It is clear that political connections protect the worst perpetrators of financial crimes. It is not enough for the Treasury to obtain a clean audit and to try to lead by example when it turns a blind eye to looting, corruption, fraud and those officials who eye the provincial purse as though it is their private piggy bank.
The two departments that receive the biggest slice of the provincial pie are also the worst offenders when it comes to irregular expenditure. With a combined total irregular expenditure of more than R8.3 billion, the departments of Health and Education alone are responsible for almost 84% of the provincial irregular expenditure. Yet neither shows any inclination to improve their financial management nor any intention to hold the relevant officials to account.
The Department of Education is incapable of operating as a going concern and is steered by a Head of Department, Tshepo Pharasi, who has already arrogantly informed the Legislature that he intends to incur further irregular expenditure in the next financial year.
When patients go hungry and hospitals operate without electricity while the spouse of a current MEC receive government tenders, a rot has set in at the department of Health which must be cleaned.
MEC Jack has shown that he lacks the political spine to set matters straight and the time is ripe for national intervention.
The people of the province deserve better and, come 2019, will see a new beginning under a DA-administration.
Adv Boitumelo Babuseng, MPL
DA Provincial Spokesperson for Economic Affairs
082 302 2117
071 251 5558