Public Works owes municipalities billions

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REFILWE MEKOA

The national Department of Public Works owes municipalities R4.5 billion.

According to Free State Public Work’s HOD, Maditse Seoke, Free State doesn’t know the exact amount it owes local municipalities. He was answering questions at the provincial legislature’s infrastructure portfolio committee in Bloemfontein on Thursday. He said the national department will be seeking a service provider to unpack how much each province owes.

Seoke also mentioned that they have a backlog of R655 million for maintenance of infrastructure. He said they are developing a maintenance plan which will be submitted to the provincial Department of Treasury. Seoke explained to the portfolio committee that the backlog is huge and he didn’t think the backlog will be eradicated in the current financial year.

He said if the executive committee approves the maintenance plan, they might have a way forward on how to deal with the issue. Seoke said that most of the irregular expenditure that the department got from the 2013/14 annual report was due to leasing of state properties that are expired.