City of Ekurhuleni fails a clean audit

This year’s AG unqualified audit opinion report identifies unauthorised, irregular, and wasteful expenditures.

The long-awaited Auditor-General (AG) report for the City of Ekurhuleni (CoE) was tabled at an extraordinary council meeting on March 12, after waiting almost four months.

The report revealed serious financial woes at the time the DA held the majority in the council and controlled the city’s finances.

The city previously received three consecutive clean audits.

This year’s AG’s unqualified audit opinion report identifies unauthorised, irregular, and wasteful expenditures.

The city manager, Dr Imogen Mashazi, called the report a ‘mild regression’ and said contract management and supply chain issues the wasteful expenditures.

The unauthorised, irregular, fruitless, and wasteful expenditure figures are disclosed in Note 47 of the CoE and Note 48 of the group audited financial statements. The disclosed figures are:

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• The city received an unqualified audit opinion, which is an upstanding audit outcome and a slight regression from the previous three consecutive clean audit opinions.

• The city’s financial statements are in the green, as reflected in the audited financial statements.

• In terms of the city’s audited service delivery indicators, the city is in the green, having achieved 78%, an improvement from the previous financial year.

• The city is on record for not incurring unauthorised, fruitless, and wasteful expenditures as disclosed in the audited financial statements for this current financial year.

• The city has incurred an irregular expenditure of R21.8m identified by the AG for the current financial year and has committed to addressing this issue promptly in agreement with the AG’s findings.

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“The city is committed to transparency, accountability, and the highest standards of fiscal responsibility. As such, we take any misrepresentation of our financial statements, especially after being audited and presented by the AG in council, with the utmost seriousness and rigour.

“The unqualified audit opinion indicates our financial statements present a fair and accurate picture of our financial position and that they have been properly prepared following the relevant financial standards prescribed in the Municipal Finance Management Act,” explained city spokesperson Zweli Dlamini.

He said the city sees this as an opportunity to strengthen its systems and processes, ensuring that the CoE not only meets but exceeds the standards of governance.

“We strongly encourage the public to consult the city’s financial statements as audited by the AG, rather than relying on information from unofficial sources. The city’s audited financial statements can be accessed for review on the city’s official website,” said Dlamini.

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