Lepelle has been running without a board of directors for nearly three years, but its financial records nevertheless impressed auditor-general Kimi Makwetu. Lepelle is an implementing agent for the water and sanitation department of Limpopo.
It has an annual budget of about R500 million. According to the national leader of the audit services in the office of the auditor-general, Eugene Zungu, Limpopo’s department of education was responsible for a huge chunk of the province’s unauthorised expenditure – which amounted to R16 million.
Zungu said in 2014/2015, fruitless and wasteful expenditure escalated to R139 million in Limpopo. He made the remarks while addressing the legislature at the Ranch Resort outside Polokwane last week.
Zungu said the education department received the fattest slice of expenditure with R73 million, while health, which received the second biggest sum of money in the annual financial budget, got R43 million.
He said Lepelle was among six government departments and entities which have received unqualified audit reports.
“About 82% of audited departments showed a significant noncompliance with applicable financial legislation, while 71% of their audited statements failed to comply with supply chain management prescripts,” said Zungu.
Lepelle chief financial officer Johan Killian said: “We have about R400 million lying in the hands of our clients, the majority of which are local and district municipalities. “We have, however, made binding written agreements with them to pay back the money in a period of two years.”
Lepelle’s boss Phineas Legodi said: “Dedication, teamwork and transparency are the three main pillars of our success.
“We have about 15 water reticulation plants in the province, with a population of over five million expecting us to quench their thirst,” he said.
He said Lepelle has been supplying water to Mopani, Capricorn and Sekhukhune regions and that the agent was further spreading its wings to Vhembe.