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Human Settlements Celebrates another Clean Audit
Source: BuaNews
Source Date: Friday, October 21, 2011
Focus: ICT for MDGs
Country: South Africa
Created: Oct 21, 2011

The annual report revealed that almost 1 000 government officials were arrested and about 871 convicted for offences related to the National Subsidy Programme – a housing programme meant for the poor.

 

“The sentences handed down include suspended sentences and with conditions to repay subsidy amounts. Of this, 1 615 acknowledgements of debt to the value of R21.7 million were signed by civil servants who defrauded the department and/or provinces,” Zulu added.

 

Four hundred municipal employees were also arrested during the period under review and 334 court cases were finalised.

 

To date, 860 acknowledgements of debt, to the value of R8.2 million, were signed by municipal employees who committed fraud relating to the National Subsidy Programme.

 

Zulu said the department would “vigorously pursue” those who tried to defraud the state because such acts affected the poor and those the government housing delivery programme targeted.

 

The Housing Development Agency had already identified more than 33 000 hectares of state land that will be evaluated for human settlements development, he added.

 

Zulu noted that the department still faced challenges, such as its capacity to monitor all human settlements projects in the country, and provinces’ failure to prioritise and budget for the resolution of blocked projects.

 

“In addressing some of these challenges, we have established an implementation forum to ensure proper accountability for agreed outputs and outcomes; and required evaluations are to be conducted on key programmes, including informal settlement upgrading and social and rental housing to improve performances in funding planning and implementation,” he said.
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