Royal household financial mess frustrates Scopa

2008-10-16 00:00

Poor financial control in the department of the Royal Household remains the bugbear of the legislature’s standing committee on public accounts (Scopa). Members gave vent to their feelings yesterday when a hearing on the department’s audit report could not go ahead because there was no annual report and financal statements.

Belinda Scott said a number of Scopa resolutions on the department have not been carried out, including a request for a forensic investigation and disciplinary action against the department’s acting HoD, Dr Vusi Shongwe.

She was surprised to learn from Roger Govender, who was seconded to assist the Royal Household sort out its finances, that Shongwe was continuing in his acting position. She said she could not believe that Shongwe remained at the helm of the department he has been incapable of running.

She added that she cannot wait to more closely scrutinise the Royal Household finances when they appear before her committee in two weeks. Scott is chairwoman of the legislature’s Finance Portfolio Committee.

Scopa chairman, the Reverend Hawu Mbatha (Nadeco), conveyed the sentiments of the committee, saying that whenever this department comes up there is confusion.

The briefing on the department’s audit report was postponed to next week and committee members were assured that they would get copies of the financial statements and annual report by Tuesday next week.

Mbatha said they also want information on progress on outstanding Scopa resolutions regarding financial misconduct and the forensic investigations.

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