It’s not exactly something that should be publicly lauded with a pat on the back or an “atta-boy”, but the Western Cape Provincial Government has happily announced that 72% of its municipalities have been awarded clean audits by the the Auditor General of South Africa (AGSA).

Of 257 municipalities in the country, only 20 were awarded clean bills of financial health, with 13 of these located in the Western Cape.

The announcement comes in anticipation of the release of the full local government audit results for the 2018-19 financial year on Wednesday 1 July. 

AGSA reports most corruption-free municipalities in WC

Anton Bredell, Minister of Local Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning, said that AGSA’s report demonstrated a meticulous financial work ethic and showed that taxpayer’s money is being directed to appropriate areas. 

“It’s simple. These reports show that taxpayers money is going where it is meant to go and not to lining the pockets of friends and families of politicians or corrupt officials,” he said. 

“Managing money well, not wasting or stealing it, is critical if you want to deliver the services needed to make the province a better place for all who live in it.”

He said that the Western Cape is head and shoulders above other provinces in terms of not stealing money. 

“On every level of basic services, no other province’s municipalities provide more services to its poorest citizens. The facts speak for themselves.”

Which municipalities have clean audits?

The municipalities in the Western Cape that have received clean audits are: 

  • Bergrivier;
  • Cederberg;
  • Saldanha Bay; 
  • Drakenstein;
  • Langeberg;
  • Witzenberg;
  • Cape Agulhas;
  • Overstrand;
  • Theewaterskloof;
  • Cape Winelands District Municipality; 
  • West Coast District Municipality;
  • Hessequa; and 
  • Prince Albert.

Bredell added that 14 more municipalities – including the City of Cape Town, -received unqualified audits, “which is also commendable”.

‘Zero-tolerance’ approach to corruption’

Bredell said the Western Cape works tirelessly to instil a zero-tolerance approach toward those who transgress the financial laws governing this province, regardless of political affiliation.

“This can be seen in the action my department took in George,” he said. “Given the legacies we inherited, there will always be some areas where improvements are needed.”

“However, it is reassuring that the evidence shows that Western Cape municipalities continue to provide their communities with the best services possible within the budgets they receive.”

“I want to congratulate and thank each municipal leader and official who has made these outcomes possible. I also want to commend my department for the work they do to support our municipalities.”

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Presh JM Reporter

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