/ 11 September 2013

ANC chief whip announces Makwetu as new auditor general

Terence Nombembe
Terence Nombembe

ANC chief whip Stone Sizani revealed on Wednesday that the parliamentary ad hoc committee, which was established to appoint a new auditor general, unanimously recommended Kimi Makwetu for the appointment, taking over from Terence Nombembe.

Makwetu's appointment was supported by all the political parties in Parliament, but despite not having an objection to the appointment, a vote had to be taken on the appointment.

Rules require that at least 60% or 240 of the National Assembly's 400 MPs support the appointment of an auditor general.

An overwhelming 298 MPs voted in favour of the appointment. It is not clear how many were in the House for the vote.

Makwetu has been Nombembe's deputy since August 2007.

During his interview for the position on September 4, MPs seemed impressed by how he ran the office of the auditor general over the past six years.

Makwetu said he had an agreement with Nombembe that he, as a deputy and administrative head of the organisation, would "spend a lot of time in the kitchen", while Nombembe would be the face of the organisation.

"My responsibility was to look at developing the machinery of the institution so that it can continue to do what it was meant to do.

"I knew that I had to do a job here and allow the auditor general to be the face of the organisation," he said.

Choosing from 92 applicants
He was one of six candidates who were interviewed for the position.

While Parliament invited only chartered accountants to apply for the job, among the 92 applicants were a welder, a receptionist, a petrol attendant, a call screener, security guards and a bartender.

Sizani said the ANC supported Makwetu's appointment to this crucial position in one of the critical organisations of our constitutional democracy.

"His appointment will ensure continuity, having closely worked with the outgoing auditor general Terence Nombembe for many years," said Sizani.

He said in the six years that Makwetu served in the position of deputy auditor general, he enhanced and created the office's good stakeholder relationships; managed the New York-based team that audited the United Nations – a project that got the auditor general's office international recognition for the sterling work done; and contributed immensely to the skills and talent building in the auditor general's office through the trainee accountants' education scheme.

Before joining the auditor general's office, Makwetu held senior management positions at various companies, including Deloitte & Touche (as director for forensics division), Liberty Life (as division director for finance), and Metropolitan Health (as senior manager for finance and administration).

"We are confident that under his leadership, the auditor general's office will continue to excellently perform its statutory task of auditing the public sector to deliver on its mandate to taxpayers in a manner that is transparent, credible and independent," said Sizani.