_: The Eastern Cape Department of Transport has obtained another unqualified audit report for the financial year ended 31 March 2012.
The department prides itself on its achievement to obtain the unqualified report for the third consecutive year since the 2009/10 financial year.
According to the Chief Financial Officer Mr Denzil Skweyiya, this positive outcome is a result of a dedicated, hard and smart working team that worked tirelessly with a winning formula which was quietly enchanted with fear of regression that pumped the adrenalin for a win.
“The team now sets its eyes on the reduction of matters of emphasis on audited items and never to regress. The non-financial performance information has not escaped the attention of the department for the fundamental improvement on all core programmes,” said Mr Skweyiya.
The department had also established a trading entity managing the provincial fleet following the expiry of a contract with Fleet Africa Eastern Cape on 31 January 2012.
A separate set of financial statements had to be prepared and audited separately. This was a testing time. A bonus to the department is that its first time audited entity also obtained unqualified audit report.
“The antagonists that doubted the inability of Provincial Government to run its fleet through the Department of Transport after the expiry of the contract were proved wrong,” said Skweyiya.
The trading entity successfully purchased its fleet and accounted for is operations successfully. The entity followed a complex reporting compared to departments that of reporting on accrual basis of accounting and was audited as such. Improvement has a space.
On behalf of the leadership of the department, Skweyiya said: “We applaud all those who demonstrated loyalty and professional behaviour during the period of the audit. We also thank the team that performed the audit from the Office of Auditor –General who worked with a smile and yet very sharp and constant to remind of due dates for the audit response.”
In response to audit outcome, Transport MEC Thandiswa Marawu said: “I can say without fear of contradiction that the Eastern Cape Department of Transport is, indeed, turning the corner. I would like to thank all the departmental officials for working together to ensure that we improve our internal controls and the general administration of the organisation.”
MEC Marawu remained convinced that more improvements were expected after a series of interventions that have been introduced in the recent past in order to improve the general performance and the administration of the department. These include, amongst others:
Workshops, which were conducted in all districts and head office on how to combat irregular expenditure from January to March 2012. Simultaneously, the department issued a circular that came into effect on 01 January 2012 that clearly showed that there would be zero tolerance to further incurring of irregular expenditure in terms of the Public Finance Management Act (PFMA), 1999.
Aggressiveness against fraud and corruption with increased awareness and necessary controls to combat and reduce this scourge that was confronting our administration. The State Security Agency is currently processing the vetting of SMS members and all personnel attached to Supply Chain Management Units in the department. Emerging fraud risk register is in place and mitigating strategies had been developed in collaboration with risk owners.
Adoption of the Management Performance Assessment Tool (MPAT) and held a Senior Management Performance Assessment Session. MPAT focuses on Strategic Management , Governance and Accountability, Human Resources Systems Management, Financial Management.
Indelible progress made in the promotion of our Performance Management and Development System and this has been proven by an increase in the submission of 96% of staff agreements for the last financial year. Going forward the Department will be focusing on a consultative approach where feedback, empowerment and support will be given to line functions on a monthly basis.
Competence Assessment Sessions were held and attended by all Senior Managers Restoration of the Service Delivery Excellence Programme /Balasela Service Delivery Programme.