VUNA AWARDS HONOUR MEDIOCRITY

The DA notes with concern the decision of the Department of Local Government in holding the Vuna Awards last night despite the fact than not one of the 45 municipalities in the province received a clean audit in the last financial year.

The awards are supposed to give support to deserving municipalities who fulfil their mandate in key performance areas of good governance and public participation, institutional transformation and organisational development, service delivery, local economic development and financial management and viability.

Municipalities in the Eastern Cape are tormented by increasing service delivery protests as we have seen in the Nelson Mandela Bay Metro and Sterkspruit, instability, infighting and where more than R2 billion was lost in municipalities due to irregular and unauthorised expenditure. Only three municipalities successfully spent 100% of their municipal infrastructural grant (MIG) in the last financial year. Why are we rewarding mediocre performance?

I will be asking legislature questions to the MEC for Local government, Mlibo Qoboshiyane, regarding financial misconduct cases against officials, especially in municipalities that featured in last night’s awards.

We cannot allow municipal officials to be paid huge salaries with taxpayer’s money, while they fail to perform their core duties. What we need is accountability and action against non-performance and mismanagement.