n Journal of Public Administration - Performance auditing as means to entrench professional ethos in the public sector : a South African local government perspective

Special issue 1
  • ISSN : 0036-0767



The transformation of the public service has marked a new wave of performance and public financial management. Government institutions are required to subscribe to statutory performance measures including efficiency, effectiveness, economy (3Es) and professional ethics thus ensuring an outcome-based governance approach to service delivery. Central to this mandate, amongst other things, performance auditing is pivotal for state institutions in general and for municipalities in particular. Performance or value-for-money audit is a process carried out by the management of the institution to assess the systems, or the lack thereof, to ensure that resources have been acquired economically and are utilised efficiently and effectively, and to report thereon to management. If appropriate also to report, to the legislative body concerned. In this regard, the paper first explores the legislative framework regulating the audit processes and ultimately the promotion of efficiency, effectiveness and economy in the management public resources within the municipalities. These include , 2003 (Act 56 of 2003), , 2000 (Act 32 of 2000), , 1995 (Act 12 of 1995) and , 2004 (Act 25 of 2004). The paper further provides an analysis of municipal audit outcomes for 2006 / 07 financial year. The analysis unravels several issues which require immediate attention in order to make financial management and accountability of municipal official operational. Therefore, the paper concludes by providing pertinent recommendations on how to enhance good performance audit practice as means to enhance professional ethos in the public service in general and within municipalities in particular.

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