Johannesburg - The Congress of SA Trade Unions said on Wednesday it is appalled by the Auditor General's latest audit.
AG Terence Nombembe announced on Tuesday that only 117 of the 536 government institutions evaluated across South Africa achieved clean audits in 2011/12.
"Cosatu is appalled at the revelation that R24.8bn has disappeared in irregular, fruitless and wasteful spending by provincial departments and entities, nearly R4bn more than the previous year's figure," spokesperson Patrick Craven said in a statement.
They called on the AG and the Treasury to monitor and check systems and procedures in all departments and provinces so problems would not only be picked up once a year during the annual report.
Craven said the biggest culprits were North West, with R4.2bn; KwaZulu-Natal with R3.9bn; and Free State with R3.3bn.
"So long as a culture of 'absolutely no consequences' for offenders persists, we shall continue to receive more depressing reports for years to come.
He cited figures from the SA Institute of Race Relations that the wasted R24.8bn could have paid for child support grants for 7.4 million children.
In addition more than 400 schools and at least 550 new prisons could have been built, and the country's total water and sanitation infrastructure for one year could have been covered.
The AG's analysis over a three-year period reveals a steady decline in the number of entities achieving clean audits.
During 2009/10, some 31% of audited entities achieved clean audits. In 2010/11, the figure dropped to 25%, and in 2011/12 only 22% received a clean bill of health.
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