Nkangala District Municipality, commended for achieving a clean audit outcome for the second time in the 2015/16 financial year
Many people are familiar with the terms “qualified” or “unqualified” opinions on audits,
says Mohammed Lorgat, Project Director, Public Sector at the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (SAICA). “These refer to an opinion expressed by auditors on the financial statements of entities.”
Unlike private sector audits, the AGSAs audit scope in the public sector is much broader. Besides the audit of financial statements, it also covers reporting of performance against predetermined objectives as well as compliance with laws and regulations.
Nkangala District Municipality received two consecutive clean audits from the Auditor-General( AG), these two trophies recognised efficient financial management received at the 2016 Institute of Municipal Finance Officers event held in Durban, and an Investor Summit which resulted in diversifying its economy, all augur well for this municipality of 400 000 households.
Auditor General Thembekile Makwetu congratulated the Municipality for this award. He believes that the Municipality is setting a good example and hopes that they will lead by example. Also to congratulate the Nkangala District Municipality is the Mpumalanga Cooperative Governance and Traditional MEC, Refilwe Mtsweni who stated that it took strong leadership decisions to work at the standard the Municipality did to comply with all regulations.
Cllr Malatjie, the Executive Mayor of the Nkangala District Municipality states, “This is a very important award which reflects the commitment of our councillors to good governance, service delivery and public participation. Our councillors have attended all committee and council meetings as well as caucuses – not one meeting failed as a result of not achieving a quorum.
It shows we are serious about service excellence. Clean audits are extremely important, they build confidence – in the community, amongst stakeholders and for the country at large – they mean we are going somewhere! Businesses and, external stakeholders want to invest in the district because we have demonstrated we are adhering to legislation, using resources appropriately and therefore are a good investment.”
The Municipal Manager of the Nkangala District Municipality was interviewed earlier this year by one of the top journalists in the Media Industry and this was her response to the following question asked; The Nkangala District Municipality has received clean audits over the past two years. Congratulations! What were some of the major processes and systems you, as Municipal Manager, put in place to ensure that this was achieved?
Ms Skosana replied that, “We needed to take inventory and look at the issues that were preventing us from achieving clean audits. Nkangala District Municipality had received an unqualified audit opinion for the previous eight years.
On January 8th 2017 President Jacob Zuma presented the Nkangala District Municipality with the highly prestigious ZK Matthews Award at the 105th ANC Celebrations that was held at Orlando Stadium, Johannesburg.
Nkangala also received two more awards from SALGA (South African Local Government Association) for being the best performing municipality in general as well as CIGAFRO (Chartered Institute if Government Finance, Audit and Risk Officers) for having clean audit systems in place.
The Executive Mayor states that these awards the Municipality has received means they have attained the success they have worked hard for. “It was a team effort, employees worked closely with councillors, internal and external committees who ensured that we keep our finances in good order and maintain excellent records. Nkangala District Municipality has their own internal audit team that assists us in following our prescribed year planner.
The Municipality has implemented shared services to improve their audit outcome in the entire district. The Executive Mayor is committing herself to help the other municipalities in the Nkangala District. She wishes that Thembisile Hani Local Municipality, Dr JS Moroka Local Municipality, Emakhazeni Local Municipality and Victor Khanye Local Municipality also receive qualified audits. These Municipalities are making significant progress in management of their systems. They will be helped further to improve their Public Participation. The Nkangala District Mayor believes in a policy that all Municipalities are one and they cannot afford to have one of them limping, this will affect the entire system.
Lastly the Executive Mayor states that she aspires the Nkangala District Municipality to be one of excellence and is determined with the Municipal Manager to obtain more Clean Audits in the future.
Article by Larissa Morar
23 February 2017