Meeting on eThekwini’s budget cancelled

2013-08-21 00:00

A DISCUSSION on a potentially damning budget report in the eThekwini Executive Committee (Exco) was derailed yesterday, with the big question hanging over where exactly the city’s leaders were.

Some Exco members from the DA and Minority Front, together with some senior municipal officials, were already in the chamber waiting for the meeting to start when they received text messages to inform them about the cancellation.

Contained within the Exco report were budget statements of several departments that grossly underspent their 2012/13 budgets, according to documents viewed by The Witness.

Budgets were underspent on:

. Sanitation (26%);

. eThekwini Transport Authority (43%);

. Housing (86%); and

. Engineering (84%).

The city spent none of its budget for capital projects, with the exception of the strategic projects (community developments), which overspent by 59%.

ANC councillor and Exco member Nigel Gumede told those present the cancellation was because the majority of Exco members were engaged in a local government training session.

However, municipal spokesperson Thabo Mofokeng said the reason was because Mayor James Nxumalo and other leaders were in the cabinet lekgotla held in the city.

DA caucus leader Zwakele Mncwango accused the ANC of deliberately frustrating the process because they had no way to explain their failure to meet the 100% target to spend the capital budget.

A date for the next Exco meeting has not been announced yet.

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