Auditor General gives Water Affairs a clean bill

Monday, September 14, 2009

Pretoria - The Auditor General (AG) has given the Department of Water Affairs its first unqualified audit report in four years.

"The department ... is pleased to have received an unqualified audit from the Auditor General for the financial year ended March 2009," the department said on Monday.

The Minister of Water and Environmental Affairs, Buyelwa Sonjica said this was a good and encouraging outcome.

"I compliment the dedication and commitment of the department, to deliver such prudence in its work around the finances of the department.

"All the hard work and commitment to clean accountable governance over this period has paid off, and I would like to urge that we keep the standard high for the sake of South Africa and its people" she said.

Previously the AG even declined to give an opinion on the department's financial statements.

In the current report the AG noted that: "the department's financial statements presented fairly, in all material respects, the financial position of the department, its financial performance and cash flows, in accordance with accepted accounting practices".

The AG also found that the department had complied with most of the requirements as set out in the Public Finance Management Act and that executive management had exercised adequate internal financial controls during the same period.

Sonjica said these findings bear testimony to the success of internal programmes instituted in 2007 that overhauled the department's finances.

The initiative was a direct response to the qualified audit received by the department for the 2006/2007 financial year.

The department believes these and other measures have resulted in the clean bill of health on its finances given by the AG for the first time in four years.