The DA-led City of Tshwane has botched an opportunity to alleviate tough financial conditions at the South African capital with a planned bond auction last Tuesday following a procedural error. Tshwane was forced to cancel its first bond auction in five years, with bids amounting to about R2.1bn, after it failed to comply with processes required by the auditor-general. The city had said that it would use the funds it intended to raise to finance capital expenditure, although details were not disclosed. After the city went to market, the auditor-general’s office refused to issue a "letter of comfort", which would have allowed the auction’s completion. A letter of comfort provides a level of assurance that an obligation would ultimately be met. The DA, which leads the city’s coalition local government, boasts in its policy documents and manifestos that it is capable of better governance and a strict adherence to processes. This apparently was not followed in this case. The cancellatio...

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