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Centlec’s financial woes exposed

AG report reveals bleak outlook and calls for urgent action

One does not need to be an accountant to understand the bleak picture outlined by the Auditor-General’s report on Centlec (SOC) Ltd’s performance during the 2022/20223 financial year.

The report summarises the electricity distributor Centlec’s performance by casting a shadow on this entity’s ability to continue as a going concern, pointing out its annual loss of R251 million during the financial year ending on 30 June 2023.

Although some inroads were made towards funds owed to Eskom compared to the previous financial year and cutting on irregular expenditure to only R156 million compared to the previous year’s R195 million, there is but little light in this dark tunnel.

From material misstatements to brightening up Centlec’s engineering and new connection accomplishments to poor record keeping, this report is not good news for normal consumers. The report is a testament to the community observations that Centlec is not performing as it should.

Considering the staggering amount of funds handled by this organization, just over R3 billion for the financial year, excuses should have merit. In light of Centlec’s monopoly as the only electricity supplier for Mangaung and since the majority of customers are on prepaid terms already, few businesses in the private sector would complain about such terms and conditions. As always, stating the problems at hand as excuses, officials convince themselves of the great work they have done in the unfriendly climate they help create.

Interesting to note that not even the AG mentioned the effects of loadshedding on Centlec’s performances. Mangaung’s failure to meet basic service delivery targets has not only failed its residents but is unlawful and non-compliant with set legislation. The DA is committed to bringing change across the country and therefore urges all residents to register to vote in the 2024 National and Provincial Government elections.

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