Maluti-A-Phofung is bankrupt!

Leona Kleynhans
DA MPL in the Free State Provincial Legislature and Constituency Head for the Maluti-a-Phofung and Phumelela Local Municipalities:

Maluti-a-Phofung Local Municipality is bankrupt.

The Auditor General’s Annual Report for the 2013/14 financial year carries a disclaimer. This means that the AG is unable to express an opinion on the financial viability of the municipality.

Collectively, the municipality wasted almost R520 million in irregular, unauthorised and fruitless and wasteful expenditure.

Household debt is at a staggering R835 million while the municipality owes ESKOM in excess of R562 million.

Considering the financial mess of the municipality, if it were a company, it would be forced to close its doors, file for bankruptcy and be liquidated.

The ANC-led municipal council, under the mayorship of Cllr Vusi Tshabalala, flouted almost all good financial practise and the Municipal Finance Management Act. The entire procurement and tender process is fraught with questionable practises.

Neither the Mayor or the Municipal Manager, Charles Taetsane, could account to how much water or electricity had been consumed, nor has it kept proper records of meter readings or payments received.

It comes as no surprise that the municipality’s bank account is overdrawn by R43 million.

The municipality is in a critical state of dysfunction, unable to deliver the most basic of services such as the collection of refuse, the maintenance of roads, and the smooth operation of water and sanitation services.

It is a sad reality that one of the most dysfunctional municipalities in the Free State is also the municipality that has been declared a special economic zone. By the looks of the AG report, the people of Maluti-a-Phofung can forget about employment, a growing industry and prosperity.

The ANC continues to fail in delivering on its mandate. It is for this reason that come next year’s municipal elections, millions of South Africans will reject the ANC and vote DA.

Where the DA governs, we deliver.