Johannesburg - Limpopo's potential shortfall of R2bn is a
result of poor oversight and a lack of clear policy direction, the Federation
of Unions of SA (Fedusa) said on Friday.
"How can a province be facing a potential shortfall of
R2bn before national government steps in? Fedusa cannot believe this blatant
squandering of taxpayers' money," general secretary Dennis George said in
"Poor oversight and the lack of clear policy direction,
as can be seen in the case of the Limpopo province... has led to diminishing
services to the people and the economy as a whole."
On Thursday, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan briefed the
media on cabinet's initial findings into the province's financial crisis.
At the end of last year it emerged that the province could
not pay its civil servants and was broke.
This was because of its large accumulated unauthorised
expenditure which had grown from R1.5bn in 2009 to R2.7bn in 2011, Gordhan
Five departments - finance, education, health and social
development, public works, and education - are under complete control of the
The remaining departments are operating under guidelines
provided by the national government.
Gordhan said a forensic investigation into the shortfall
would begin this week.
"As and when any evidence of breaking the law is
revealed by the forensic investigation, the perpetrators will be charged,
whether they are government employees or service providers, and we will have
special courts, World Cup 2010 style, on standby," he said.
George said the public needed assurance that the people who
caused the financial crisis would be reprimanded.
"(We) need to know exactly how this financial fiasco
happened and, more importantly, taxpayers need to be assured that the
perpetrators of bribery, corruption, maladministration and wasteful
expenditure will be brought to book," he said.
"Fedusa urges government to cease its policy of cadre
deployment and combat corruption in local, provincial, and national government
so that the necessary services can be delivered to our people."