The Department of Home Affairs’ annual report has finally been released two weeks after the deadline for annual reports. The Department has received a qualified audit and the Auditor-General (AG) has revealed major mismanagement within the Department, particularly by Director General (DG) Mkuseli Apleni.
The AG stated that reported performance was not valid due to a lack of recordkeeping and monitoring and evaluation by both the senior management and internal auditors. The department has also mismanaged procurement and contracts by awarding contracts to friends and family and not following tender procedures.
This is hardly a clean and corruption-free Home Affairs.
A large part of this mismanagement has been placed at the accounting officer’s door. The AG stated that Director General Apleni, as accounting officer, has failed to “exercise effective oversight responsibility regarding financial and performance reporting and compliance as well as related internal controls”.
The AG has also found that the DG has failed to comply with section 38 (1)(c) and 40 (1) of the Public Finance Management Act, which constitutes financial misconduct on behalf of the Director General.
This is the third year in a row in which Mr Apleni has failed to comply with one or more sections of the Public Finance Management Act (PFMA). He has presided over R800 million of irregular, fruitless and wasteful expenditure. Surely this continued failure to comply with the PFMA should result in dismissal?
I will be writing to the new Minister of Home Affairs, Naledi Pandor, to ask that she institute disciplinary proceedings against Director General Apleni for his failure to comply with the PFMA.
Minister Pandor must clean house. Three years of financial mismanagement by one DG is unacceptable and action needs to be taken.