By Mbali Ntuli, MPL, DA KZN Spokesperson on Education:
NATIONAL and Provincial Treasury’s drastic step of providing the province’s Education department with a R908million bailout should not come as a big surprise given the many years of financial mismanagement within this department.
Two years ago the DA called for a full enquiry into the financial affairs of KZN’s DoE. After some reluctance MEC Peggy Nkonyeni commissioned an enquiry.
This was completed a year ago.
Despite calls by the DA for the MEC and then Premier Senzo Mchunu to release the findings, there has been no tabling of the report or even any mention of it in portfolio committee meetings.
The findings of this investigation would have helped the MEC finally identity the many problems with her department’s finances. They would also have ensured that a plan to remedy the situation could be formulated.
Two years of inaction show that both the MEC and the Premier do not care that millions of rands meant for the learners of KZN are still being spent in dubious ways every year.
The ANC only has itself to blame for the dire situation that KZN’s Education department finds itself in.
Given the current economic situation in our country, the ANC in KZN must explain why it is consistently incapable of responsible spending when it comes to the most important budget in the province.
Until MEC Nkonyeni releases the findings of her commission of enquiry – as well those which form part of a further RR44 million spent by the DoE on other forensic investigations – KZN will not have a functional education department, let alone one that ensures that the best interests of learners is upheld.