OUTA Emfuleni issues letter of demand over Municipal Financial Recovery Plan
The Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (OUTA) has called out the Municipal Financial Recovery Service unit (MFRS) at National Treasury yet again, following timeframe flaws for public participation in the drafting of the Financial Recovery Plan for Emfuleni Local Municipality.
“This is the second time that the residents of Emfuleni have been short-changed by the MFRS unit. As the organisation determined to ensure the correct measures are agreed on and put in place, OUTA has brought this illegal timeframe to the units attention,” says Michael Holenstein, Manager at the OUTA Local Division. “The law has once again been ignored by the MFRS unit who are obliged to provide the public with a reasonable timeframe to comment on the draft plan.”
Though the MFRS unit republished the notice on 1 November, indicating that the public had 14 days to comment, the notice gave a deadline of 7 November.
“OUTA had to issue them with yet another letter of demand to ensure reasonable participation in this critical intervention as the plan is the key component to a turnaround strategy that will bring Emfuleni back to its feet,” says Holenstein.
On 18 October, the MFRS unit presented the Emfuleni community with a draft financial recovery plan and slapped them with a mere three days to comment. “The law says that the public should have at least 14 business days to comment and that’s what we want to ensure happens,” says Holenstein.
OUTA is currently reviewing the draft plan and will be submitting its own comments on behalf of its supporters in the Emfuleni community.
OUTA urges community members to participate in the process as this plan will become the blueprint for the municipality going forward. The plan is geared at restoring the economic health of the community and will empower the community to hold their officials to account.
The financial recovery plan is a binding and actionable document which requires a municipality to adhere to specific key deliverables to address the poor financial practices within the municipality. These deliverables may include the following:
- Budgeting and expenditure management
- Revenue management
- Customer care
- Cash management
- Financial controls
- Asset management
- Supply chain management
- Strategic leadership, institutional stabilisation and transformation
- Sustainable service delivery
- Accounting, IT and data management
- Liability management