South Africa-Economy-Floods

S/Africa: Ramaphosa warns against abuse of flood relief funds

APA-Cape Town (South Africa)

President Cyril Ramaphosa has warned government agencies and businesses providing goods and services to areas affected by South Africa’s recent floods that he will not tolerate any “acts of self-enrichment” at the expense of the victims.

Ramaphosa issued the warning when he addressed a joint sitting of the National Assembly and the National Council of Provinces in Cape Town Tuesday evening. 

“It is a great source of shame that when this disaster struck, the most burning public debate was around fears that the resources allocated to respond to this disaster would be misappropriated or wasted,” he said.

According to Ramaphosa, “it is a stern reminder to all of government and to businesses providing goods and services that the people of South Africa will not stand by for acts of self-enrichment at the expense of those who have already lost so much.”

The president, however, assured the two houses of Parliament that his government had set several measures to be taken to strengthen oversight and accountability.

“Working together with National Treasury, the Auditor-General will conduct real-time audits on the emergency flood relief funds,” he said.

This would provide “independent assurance on whether public funds have been appropriately accounted for and were used for their intended purpose,” he added.

The floods left over 400 people dead in KwaZulu-Natal province – among them 58 students and one educator, provincial records show.

And some 54 people are still missing and unaccounted for, while over 5,700 houses have been completely damaged, according to the records. 

NM/jn/APA

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