Auditor-General given more bite with passing of Public Audit Amendment Bill

The Bill gives the Auditor-General significant new powers to take action against those who are found to have wasted or misused public funds.

FILE: Auditor-General Kimi Makwetu. Picture: Christa Eybers/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - The Public Audit Amendment Bill has been passed by the National Council of Provinces (NCOP).

It will now be sent to President Cyril Ramaphosa to be signed into law.

The Bill gives the Auditor-General significant new powers to take action against those who are found to have wasted or misused public funds.

All parties backed the Bill.

The ANC’s Motalane Monakedi says it was long overdue.

"For the first time, the Auditor-General will have the authority to take remedial action on his or her findings and recommendations and also be able to ensure that financial losses suffered by the state are recovered."

The Democratic Alliance (DA)'s Faried Essack: "Honourable chairperson, it is indeed a novel experience for me to stand here today and applaud a piece of legislation."

The Public Audit Amendment Bill will allow the Auditor-General to refer suspect matters uncovered during audits for further investigation and to issue a certificate of debt against an accounting officer where they fail to recover losses from the officials responsible.