Four depts in trouble for budget bungling

2010-09-03 00:00

THE KwaZulu-Natal Legislature yesterday adopted a tough resolution of the financial portfolio committee to act against four provincial government departments that overspent or underspent on their budget allocations in the 2009/2010 financial year.

A report presented by portfolio committee chairperson Belinda Scott revealed that the committee selected the four departments for hearings, which were conducted from August 25 to 27 on their close-out budget performance reports.

The departments are Agriculture, Environmental Affairs and Rural Development, which under-spent by over R29 million, Education, which overspent by over R172 million, Health, which overspent by over R2 billion, and Transport which underspent by R54 million.

The unaudited provincial expenditure for the 2009/2010 financial year amounted to over R63 billion of the final estimate of almost R70 billion, and resulted in a net over-expenditure of R1,6 billion.

Twelve of the 16 provincial departments spent between 94,9% and 100% of their final estimates, with three departments ending the financial year with net over-expenditure and one department, Sport and Recreation, with an expenditure of 89%.

The committee proposed that tough measures be taken against the departments to avoid over and underexpenditure in future.

The committee’s report was adopted in the face of criticism of the departments by opposition parties.

The Legislature also approved the committee’s resolution that the provincial government must consider observing a uniform policy of no work, no pay with respect to the August 2010 public workers’ strike and for premier Zweli Mkhize to report to the committee on this issue by October 31.

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