Northern Cape provincial PFMA Audit outcomes 2021-2022

South Africa: The Premier of the Northern Cape, Dr Zamani Saul, and Members of the Executive Council today joined the Auditor General of South Africa (AGSA), Ms Tsakani Maluleke, for the annual Public Finance Management Act (PFMA) roadshow announcing the Provincial 2021/22 audit outcomes. 

South Africa: The Premier of the Northern Cape, Dr Zamani Saul, and Members of the Executive Council today joined the Auditor General of South Africa (AGSA), Ms Tsakani Maluleke, for the annual Public Finance Management Act (PFMA) roadshow announcing the Provincial 2021/22 audit outcomes. 

Premier Saul welcomed and is greatly pleased with the improved audit outcomes as it bears testimony to the success of the intervention programmes by the Provincial Government to improve the general administration of government resources.

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The Premier, together with the Members of the Executive Council, are satisfied and optimistic about the audit outcomes, and this can be attributed to the revival of the Operation Clean Audit (OPCA) committee with their specific emphasis on improved audit outcomes. 

The committee is chaired by the Director General, supported by the Heads of Departments (HODs) of the Department of Cooperative Governance Human Settlements and Traditional Affairs (COGHSTA) and Provincial Treasury (PT). 

Key officials at the Provincial Treasury in the Financial Governance Division, led by the Provincial Accountant General, provide technical support to OPCA. Senior managers and managers at the Auditor General of South Africa (AGSA) form part of this structure to provide certain insights.

In order to give further support to the Provincial Departments, the Provincial Treasury has appointed Champions in the form of senior managers to assist and support all the targeted departments for clean audit outcomes.

Audit outcomes

Stemming from these measures; three (3) departments, namely the Office of the Premier, Provincial Treasury and the Department of Social Development, maintained clean audits; two Departments reported improvements, with the Department of Sport, Arts and Culture entering the clean Audit space for the first time bringing the Provincial total of Clean Audits to four (4).

The Department of Transport, Safety and Liaison improved from the Qualification space to Unqualified after years in the Qualified space.

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We pride ourselves in the fact that the Office of the Premier, Provincial Treasury and Social Development managed to maintain the clean audit status for the fourth year in a row and that another Clean Audit was registered.

Six (6) Departments, namely COGHSTA, Economic, Development and Tourism, Education, Transport, Safety and Liaison, Roads and Public Works and the Provincial Legislature, obtained Unqualified Audit outcomes with findings. Though being unqualified with findings, we firmly believe that the technicalities that resulted in the opinion will be adequately addressed in the 2022/23 cycle.

Only two (2) Departments, namely Agriculture, Environmental Affairs, Land Reform and Rural Development, as well as the Department of Health, received Qualified Audits.

Worth noting is that remarkable progress is being made with the intervention programme in these departments. To this end, at the Department of Health, in the management report issued to the Department in this audit cycle, the AGSA reported an improvement in the creditor payment period from 94 days in the 20/21 financial year to 64 days in the 2021/22 financial year. 

This is an improvement worth mentioning. We are aware that this is still way above thirty days, but it’s a move in the positive direction. There was no unauthorized expenditure (Over expenditure of DOH budget), which is the first in years. 

The Department spent 99% of its budget. There was a significant decrease in accruals in the 2021/22 financial year when compared to the prior fiscal year.

This is the fourth year in a row where the Auditor General has not expressed any disclaimer of opinion on the financial statements submitted by provincial departments.

Premier Saul welcomed the fact that the Auditor General found major improvements in our Performance reports. We can get only, from here on, build on these achievements. Premier Saul recommitted the Executive and the Provincial Administration to exercise accountability, compliance and transparency in the execution of their duties. 

Dr Saul further expresses his appreciation to the Auditor General for the professional relationship that exists between the Office of the AGSA and the Provincial Administration.