Accountability and transparency

Accountability and transparency

Cabinet placed five Limpopo departments under administration in 2011.

It was a necessary pain, as one official described the decision at the time.

Limpopo was in a financial crisis and had depleted its R757,3 million overdraft facility with the Corporation for

Public Deposits – a wholly owned subsidiary of the South African Reserve Bank, whose function is to invest money received from the government.

Fast-forward to 2015, the national government has announced that the province is no longer under administration.

There is no doubt that the outlook for Limpopo has changed since 2011.

By July 2013, the province’s credit balance was at a positive R3,3

billion compared to an overdraft of R1,7 billion when it went under administration.

A cash-control strategy eliminated the overdraft. There was a reduction in unauthorised expenditure from R175 million to R16 million in the 2013/14 financial year

and three departments (Health, Public Works and Roads and Transport)

under administration improved. Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene was recently quoted as saying the intervention had brought a significant level of financial health to Limpopo

and initiated a number of important projects that the province could carry into

the future under the leadership of the provincial executive council and the guidance of national departments.

While the provincial government’s 2011 financial problems seem to be over,

senior government officials in Limpopo are not letting their guard down,

acknowledging the importance of proper financial controls to ensure there is no repeat of the previous challenges.

A high-powered provincial delegation – including MECs, mayors

and municipal managers – gathered in Bela Bela recently for a Corporate Governance Workshop convened by the provincial Treasury.

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