Maluleke flags some SOEs for lagging on good financial management

AG Tsakani Maluleke tabled the national and provincial audit outcomes in Parliament on Wednesday.

FILE: Auditor General (AG) Tsakani Maluleke. Picture: @AuditorGen_SA/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG - The Auditor General Tsakani Maluleke has reported an overall improvement in government audit outcomes but has red-flagged state-owned enterprises and key service delivery departments such as health, education, human settlements and public works.

Maluleke tabled the national and provincial audit outcomes in Parliament on Wednesday.

Out of a total of 425 audits carried out, 115 auditees received a clean bill of financial health, up from 109 clean audits last year.

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But Maluleke also revealed irregular expenditure of R166 billion, up on last year’s figure of R109.82 billion and warned this figure could rise even higher as some audits were still outstanding.

State-owned enterprises remain a drag on the public finances and key service-delivery departments are lagging behind in good financial management.’

“The key service delivery departments of health, education and public works have the poorest financial health of all, and this affects their ability to deliver services to citizens. In total, these departments incurred 90% of all unauthorised expenditure.”

Maluleke said 13 public entities received disclaimers, one of the worst possible audit outcomes, including the National Skills Fund and the SA Nuclear Energy Corporation.

“The report indicates that fruitless and wasteful expenditure remains high, with 220 auditees losing a combined R1.72 billion to fruitless and wasteful expenditure in the current year.”

She said seven provincial health departments had unpaid medical negligence claims at year-end that exceeded their entire operational budget for the next year.