Govt audit blames District Administrators

District Administrators and Chief Executives are to blame for failure by local authorities to perform as expected, a government systems audit report has revealed.

Part of the report from the office of the Mashonaland East Provincial Administrator, Cuthbert Ndarukwa, reads: “Elected councillors should not be blamed for failed local governance as Provincial and District Administrators, Town Clerks and Chief Executive Officers should ensure that things move in the desired direction. The failure of Local Authorities on the ground reflects badly on the Central Government”.

The report said Minister of Local Government, Ignatius Chombo, failed to understand where things were going wrong at some local authorities.

“The placement of a Council under management is a sign of failure on the part of the District Administrator and the Chief Executive Officer and not the Councillors. The Chief Executive Officer is the Executive Head of the Local Authority and if Council fails to perform the blame is squarely on the Chief Executive and not the Councillors”.

“The Chief Executive Officer has a team of officers who assist him/her in running affairs of the Council. The Chief Executive Officer and his team should effectively steer the Council in the right direction. Councillors are just policy makers and do not come to council regularly”, reads the report.

The PA’s Office conducted the systems audit at its 10 local authorities to ascertain their effectiveness. Marondera Municipality was the second Local Authority to be audited.

The audit team expressed satisfaction to note that it had registered major successes on the ground, despite operating in an environment characterised by a general shortage of resources.

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