Internal audit boss grilled over missing overtime report

ANSWERS WANTED: Nelson Mandela Bay COO Mandla George, left, municipal public accounts committee chair Phumza Tshanga and the committee’s co-ordinator, AJ de Wet, at Tuesday’s public accounts committee meeting
ANSWERS WANTED: Nelson Mandela Bay COO Mandla George, left, municipal public accounts committee chair Phumza Tshanga and the committee’s co-ordinator, AJ de Wet, at Tuesday’s public accounts committee meeting
Image: NOMAZIMA NKOSI

Nelson Mandela Bay internal audit boss Bonnie Chan felt the wrath of councillors on Tuesday when she battled to explain why she had not submitted a report on the abuse of the city’s overtime bill.

In July, the municipality’s public accounts committee instructed internal audit to investigate the abuse of overtime.

A report was meant to be tabled on October 29, but is still in draft form.

ACDP councillor Lance Grootboom, who requested the investigation through a motion, asked Chan why the report was not ready.

“It’s totally unacceptable that we don’t have a report six months after the fact,” he said.

“Our overtime is skyrocketing and it was projected in our 2019/2020 midterm report that we were going to spend R81m more than budgeted for.”

Chan said a draft report had been compiled but further comment was needed from the different departments.

When asked which departments she was referring to, Chan was unable to say.

The ballooning overtime bill was projected to reach R256m by the end of the 2019/2020 financial year, according to the midterm report.

The metro’s COO, Mandla George, asked Chan if the report had been circulated to the different departments and when was this done.

Chan said: “Yes, I have. But I’ll just have to check on the details and submit it to the committee.”

ANC councillor Ncediso Captain said the report must be available at the next committee meeting.

“What we want is a commitment of when we will get a report,” Captain said.

Economic development, tourism and agriculture executive director Anele Qaba said he had not received any draft report that required his input.

“We had an internal audit committee [meeting] last Friday and the matter of overtime was discussed in the meeting. There was no indication that there was a report circulated.”

“In the audit committee we actually highlighted that the respective directorates must be able to provide an analysis of the overtime and that must be submitted to this committee,” he said.

Public accounts committee chair Phumza Tshanga said officials did not take councillors seriously.

“Bonnie needs to take us serious. She’s been absent in our meetings and now she comes here and lies to us,” Tshanga said.

DA councillor Kabelo Mogatosi said if Grootboom had not pushed for answers on the report certain inconsistencies would not be known.

“Qaba and Chan gave completely different answers here today and what I would appreciate is a detailed report as to what happened,” Mogatosi said.

The councillors agreed that the office of acting city manager Noxolo Nqwazi would deal with the issue.

 

 

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