R1?bln expenditure to be settled

2009-11-26 00:00

A BILL aimed at settling past unauthorised expenditure, to the tune of R1,044 billion and dating back to 2000/01, was tabled before the ­KwaZulu-Natal Legislature. This follows the Unauthorised Expenditure Authorisation Act, which was passed in 2007 that settled such expenditure dating back to 1992/93.

KZN MEC for Finance Ina Cronje explained that this was a way of clearing the clutter in the province’s account books. The money has been approved by Treasury. The standing committee on public accounts (Scopa) met twice this year to consider all unauthorised expenditure which to date had not been resolved.

In her report, Cronje said some of the overspending had taken place since the 2000/01 financial year, adding that the provincial treasury and health jointly overspent by R217,6 million. In the 2001/02 financial year, the Health Department was the biggest contributor of the R341,3 million overexpenditure along with two other departments.

Overexpenditure of R281,7 million was incurred in the 2002/03 financial year, mostly by the Education Department due to the compensation of employees and provision for the influx of six-year-olds entering the school system following a policy change.

In the last financial year, the Health Department was criticised by opposition parties for overspending its budget by more than R2 billion.

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