Hon House Chair, the ACDP notes that the main aim of the Department of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs is to improve co-operative governance across the three spheres of government. If the three spheres or tiers of government could be viewed in a
linear progression, then certainly the significance of the tiers on the polar ends must be emphasised.
The Auditor-General of South Africa audited 257 municipalities and 21 municipal entities for the 2017-18 financial year. Of the audited municipalities, only 18 received a clean audit. The Auditor-General stated that irregular expenditure remain high, at R25,2 billion.
As Cogta fails to improve co-operative governance at a national and local government level, the ACDP calls on the Auditor-General to implement the authority that it now has in terms of the Public Audit Amendment Act, which gives his department the powers to act on corruption and the abuse of public funds.
The fact that Cogta Portfolio Committee was unable to assess the service delivery, financial performance, audit findings, the report achievements and challenges of the department largely because it had not tabled its annual report at the time of the BRRR process is shocking. This is an appropriate time to implement consequence management.
The ACDP also notes that the Commission for the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Cultural, Religious and Linguistic Communities, CRL Commission, incurred irregular expenditure of over R2 million and calls on the commission to get its house in order before attempting to force regulation on the church. The CRL Commission is for the promotion and protection of religious rights, not the impoverisation and the persecution of religious groups, and in particular, the church!
The ACDP cannot support this report and calls on members of the portfolio committee to hold and bring errant members of this department to account. I thank you.