Call for more partnerships to improve the financial management of local authorities

KwaZulu-Natal Finance MEC, Nomusa Dube-Ncube, highlighted the need for strategic partnerships between government and the private sector for municipalities to improve their ability to manage their budgets.

“It is now more critical than ever for us as provincial and local government to continue to work in partnership with various private sector stakeholders to learn from each other to better serve our communities,” Dube said. -Ncube.

She made the call during a high-level engagement on financial performance and knowledge sharing on financial and accounting protocols for local governments held on Tuesday.

The virtual engagement, which was attended by chief financial officers (CFOs) and accountants from various municipalities, was organized in partnership with the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants and the Accounting Standards Boards.

Dube-Ncube, who is also a government affairs leader, said the pledge was only to help municipalities improve their financial management, and “it will enable them to deliver much better services.”

“We need municipalities to show good fiscal health as this attracts investment to their communities,” Dube-Ncube said.

Despite the challenges facing the municipal environment, the MEC said the Provincial Treasury continues to be committed to supporting municipalities and promoting good financial governance in the public sector.

She said that under Article 5 of the Municipal Financial Management Act (MFMA) and the general functions of national and provincial treasuries, the KZN Provincial Treasury performs a monitoring and follow-up function, but also “provides technical support and advice to assist municipalities in instilling effective financial management practices”.

“At the micro level, the KZN Provincial Treasury focuses on providing structured support, in conjunction with training and skills transfer in specifically targeted municipalities in the province.

“At the macro level, the intention is also to provide support through educational platforms such as CFO forums and frequent training seminars on relevant financial and governance issues,” Dube-Ncube said.

She reiterated that the ministry wants to improve the type of support it provides to municipalities, as they are at the forefront of service delivery.

As the country enters the 4th Industrial Revolution (4IR), Dube-Ncube said municipalities must consider using technological mechanisms as a way to move forward and effectively address challenges in an ever-changing municipal environment.

“Municipalities are urged to make concerted efforts to constantly keep abreast of technical updates, changes and new reforms, and to ensure effective capacity building at all levels, thereby improving financial management and, in particular, ultimately service delivery. A well-served community creates economic momentum that promotes sustainable growth and development,” MEC said.

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