Spare us the platitudes and just do your jobs, politicians

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Spare us the platitudes and just do your jobs, politicians

The barrage of praise for Kimi Makwetu from those who for years blatantly ignored him is nauseating

Columnist

It’s enough to make one’s blood boil. Politicians fell over each other last week to sing the praises of Kimi Makwetu, the hugely respected auditor-general, after he died of lung cancer. Makwetu deserved every bit of praise he received. He was that rarest of civil servants: dedicated, hard-working, committed to excellence and as straight as an arrow.

Yet when the man was alive these politicians ignored virtually everything he said. Year in and year out, Makwetu exposed the rampant corruption of the state and its entities. Year in and year out, it was business as usual. A few words of concern would be said in parliament, but nothing was done.

All the people Makwetu and his teams have identified as being responsible for the collapse of municipalities across the country are still drawing salaries. In the 2018/2019 financial year only 20, or 8%, of SA’s 257 municipalities managed to get clean audits (unqualified with no findings). The audit outcomes showed that 13% of the municipalities (33) received a disclaimer — the worst possible audit outcome, up from 31 a year earlier. The year before that? Only 18 of the 257 municipalities managed to obtain clean audits. That was a decline from the 33 municipalities which received a clean audit in 2016/2017. The year before, 48 municipalities had received a clean audit...

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