DA: Presidency's spending up by 74%
Cape Town - The presidency's 2010/11 annual report released on Thursday shows that the department has "excelled at increasing the size of its budget, but not the quality of its performance", the Democratic Alliance said.
Between 2009/10 and 2010/11, the presidency's spending increased by 74%, DA parliamentary leader Athol Trollip said in a statement.
However, according to the auditor general's report, even the most basic regulatory processes were still not being followed, he said.
"Despite spending over R61m on travel and subsistence, and almost R500m on the largely ANC Youth League-controlled National Youth Development Agency [NYDA] over the past financial year, the presidency was unable to develop a satisfactory strategic plan or implement sufficient performance monitoring procedures.
"How did this happen, given that the presidency includes the department of performance monitoring and evaluation, which is supposed to evaluate the performance of the entire national government?" he asked.
The greatest impediment to the presidency's improved performance was the absence of regular oversight by a dedicated portfolio committee.
Without constant parliamentary scrutiny to keep the department on the right track, the disjuncture between its vast budget and its underwhelming contribution to improving government performance would continue.
"More than a year ago, I proposed that a presidential portfolio committee be established to oversee the activities of the presidency.
"The ANC has subsequently sought to bury this proposal in Parliament. I will be using the opportunity presented by [the] release of the presidency's annual report, and the concerning trends this report highlights, to put this proposal back on the parliamentary agenda," Trollip said.