Report of the Auditor-General to Parliament on South African Health Products Regulatory Authority
Report on the audit of the financial statements
1. I have audited the financial statements of the South Africa Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA) set out on pages 97 to 151, which comprise statement of financial position as at 31 March 2022, statement of financial performance, statement of changes in net assets and cash flow statement and statement of comparison of budget information with actual information for the year then ended, as well as notes to the financial statements, including a summary of significant accounting policies.
2. In my opinion, the financial statements present fairly, in all material respects, the financial position of SAHPRA as at 31 March 2022, and its financial performance and cash flows for the year then ended in accordance with the Standards of Generally Recognised Accounting Practice (GRAP) and the requirements of the Public Finance Management Act 1 of 1999 (PFMA).
Basis for opinion
3. I conducted my audit in accordance with the International Standards on Auditing (ISAs). My responsibilities under those standards are further described in the auditor-general’s responsibilities for the audit of the financial statements section of my report.
4. I am independent of the entity in accordance with the International Ethics Standards Board for Accountants’ International code of ethics for professional accountants (including International Independence Standards) (IESBA code) as well as other ethical requirements that are relevant to my audit in South Africa. I have fulfilled my other ethical responsibilities in accordance with these requirements and the IESBA code.
5. I believe that the audit evidence I have obtained is sufficient and appropriate to provide a basis for my opinion.
6. I draw attention to the matters below. My opinion is not modified in respect of these matters.
Restatement of corresponding figures
7. As disclosed in note 31 to the financial statements, the corresponding figures for 31 March 2021 were restated as a result of an error in the financial statements of the entity at, and for the year ended, 31 March 2022.
Responsibilities of the accounting authority for the financial statements
8. The board of directors, which constitutes the accounting authority, is responsible for the preparation and fair presentation of the financial statements in accordance with the Standards of GRAP and the requirements of the PFMA, and for such internal control as the accounting authority determines is necessary to enable the preparation of financial statements that are free from material misstatement, whether due to fraud or error.
9. In preparing the financial statements, the accounting authority is responsible for assessing the entity’s ability to continue as a going concern, disclosing, as applicable, matters relating to going concern and using the going concern basis of accounting unless the appropriate governance structure either intends to liquidate the entity or to cease operations, or has no realistic alternative but to do so.
Auditor-General’s responsibilities for the audit of the financial statements
10. My objectives are to obtain reasonable assurance about whether the financial statements as a whole are free from material misstatement, whether due to fraud or error, and to issue an auditor’s report that includes my opinion. Reasonable assurance is a high level of assurance but is not a guarantee that an audit conducted in accordance with the ISAs will always detect a material misstatement when it exists. Misstatements can arise from fraud or error and are considered material if, individually or in aggregate, they could reasonably be expected to influence the economic decisions of users taken on the basis of these financial statements.
11. A further description of my responsibilities for the audit of the financial statements is included in the annexure to this auditor’s report.
Report on the audit of the annual performance report
12. In accordance with the Public Audit Act 25 of 2004 (PAA) and the general notice issued in terms thereof, I have a responsibility to report on the usefulness and reliability of the reported performance information against predetermined objectives for selected programme presented in the annual performance report. I performed procedures to identify material findings but not to gather evidence to express assurance.
13. My procedures address the usefulness and reliability of the reported performance information, which must be based on the entity’s approved performance planning documents. I have not evaluated the completeness and appropriateness of the performance indicators included in the planning documents. My procedures do not examine whether the actions taken by the entity enabled service delivery. My procedures do not extend to any disclosures or assertions relating to the extent of achievements in the current year or planned performance strategies and information in respect of future periods that may be included as part of the reported performance information. Accordingly, my findings do not extend to these matters.
14. I evaluated the usefulness and reliability of the reported performance information in accordance with the criteria developed from the performance management and reporting framework, as defined in the general notice, for the following selected programme presented in the entity’s annual performance report for the year ended 31 March 2022.
Pages in the annual performance report
Programme 4: clinical and pharmaceutical evaluation
47 – 52
15. I performed procedures to determine whether the reported performance information was properly presented and whether performance was consistent with the approved performance planning documents. I performed further procedures to determine whether the indicators and related targets were measurable and relevant, and assessed the reliability of the reported performance information to determine whether it was valid, accurate and complete.
16. I did not identify any material findings on the usefulness and reliability of the reported performance information for this programme, programme 4 – clinical and pharmaceutical evaluation
17. I draw attention to the matters below.
Achievement of planned targets
18. Refer to the annual performance report on pages 26 – 59 for information on the achievement of planned targets for the year and management’s explanations provided for the under and over achievement of targets.
Adjustment of material misstatements
19. I identified material misstatements in the annual performance report submitted for auditing. These material misstatements were in the reported performance information of programme 4: clinical and pharmaceutical evaluation. As management subsequently corrected the misstatements, I did not raise any material findings on the usefulness and reliability of the reported performance information.
Report on the audit of compliance with legislation
20. In accordance with the PAA and the general notice issued in terms thereof, I have a responsibility to report material findings on the entity’s compliance with specific matters in key legislation. I performed procedures to identify findings but not to gather evidence to express assurance.
21. The material findings on compliance with specific matters in key legislation are as follows:
Annual financial statements, performance and annual reports
22. The financial statements submitted for auditing were not fully prepared in accordance with the prescribed financial reporting framework and supported by full and proper records, as required by section 55(1)(b) of the PFMA.
23. Material misstatements of expenditure and disclosure items identified by the auditors in the submitted financial statement were corrected and the supporting records were provided subsequently, resulting in the financial statements receiving an unqualified audit opinion.
24. Effective and appropriate steps were not taken to prevent irregular expenditure amounting to R3 009 867 as disclosed in note 37 to the annual financial statements, as required by section 51(1)(b)(ii) of the PFMA. The majority of the irregular expenditure was caused by contract variations that were not approved by the relevant authority.
25. Effective and appropriate steps were not taken to collect all revenue due, as required by section 51(1)(b)(i) of the PFMA.
26. The accounting authority is responsible for the other information. The other information comprises the information included in the annual report, which includes the audit committee’s report. The other information does not include the financial statements, the auditor’s report and those selected programme presented in the annual performance report that have been specifically reported in this auditor’s report.
27. My opinion on the financial statements and findings on the reported performance information and compliance with legislation do not cover the other information and I do not express an audit opinion or any form of assurance conclusion on it.
28. In connection with my audit, my responsibility is to read the other information and, in doing so, consider whether the other information is materially inconsistent with the financial statements and the selected programmes presented in the annual performance report, or my knowledge obtained in the audit, or otherwise appears to be materially misstated.
29. The following paragraphs will be included in the auditor’s report to highlight to the users whether any inconsistencies in the other information exist.
30. I did not receive other information prior to the date of this auditor’s report. When I do receive and read the other information, if I conclude that there is a material misstatement therein, I are required to communicate the matter to those charged with governance and request that the other information be corrected. If the other information is not corrected, I may have to retract this auditor’s report and re-issue an amended report as appropriate. However, if it is corrected, this will not be necessary.
31. I considered internal control relevant to my audit of the financial statements, reported performance information and compliance with applicable legislation; however, my objective was not to express any form of assurance on it. The matters reported below are limited to the significant internal control deficiencies that resulted in the findings on compliance with legislation included in this report.
32. The entity did not implement proper record keeping to ensuring complete, relevant and accurate information is accessible and available to support financial statements.
33. Management did not ensure appropriate review and monitoring of compliance with revenue and debt management policies, which led to ineffective collection of revenue earned.
34. Management did not ensure appropriate review and monitoring of compliance with procurement laws and regulations, which resulted to re-occurrence of irregular expenditure.
31 July 2022
Annexure – Auditor-General’s responsibility for the audit
1. As part of an audit in accordance with the ISAs, I exercise professional judgement and maintain professional scepticism throughout my audit of the financial statements and the procedures performed on reported performance information for selected programme and on the entity’s compliance with respect to the selected subject matters.
35. In addition to my responsibility for the audit of the financial statements as described in this auditor’s report, I also:
- identify and assess the risks of material misstatement of the financial statements, whether due to fraud or error; design and perform audit procedures responsive to those risks; and obtain audit evidence that is sufficient and appropriate to provide a basis for my opinion. The risk of not detecting a material misstatement resulting from fraud is higher than for one resulting from error, as fraud may involve collusion, forgery, intentional omissions, misrepresentations or the override of internal control;
- obtain an understanding of internal control relevant to the audit in order to design audit procedures that are appropriate in the circumstances, but not for the purpose of expressing an opinion on the effectiveness of the entity’s internal control;
- evaluate the appropriateness of accounting policies used and the reasonableness of accounting estimates and related disclosures made by the board of directors, which constitutes the accounting authority;
- conclude on the appropriateness of the accounting authority’s use of the going concern basis of accounting in the preparation of the financial statements. I also conclude, based on the audit evidence obtained, whether a material uncertainty exists relating to events or conditions that may cast significant doubt on the ability of SAHPRA to continue as a going concern. If I conclude that a material uncertainty exists, I am required to draw attention in my auditor’s report to the related disclosures in the financial statements about the material uncertainty or, if such disclosures are inadequate, to modify my opinion on the financial statements. My conclusions are based on the information available to me at the date of this auditor’s report. However, future events or conditions may cause an entity to cease operating as a going concern;
- evaluate the overall presentation, structure and content of the financial statements, including the disclosures, and determine whether the financial statements represent the underlying transactions and events in a manner that achieves fair presentation.
Communication with those charged with governance
36. I communicate with the accounting authority regarding, among other matters, the planned scope and timing of the audit and significant audit findings, including any significant deficiencies in internal control that I identify during my audit.
37. I also provide the accounting authority with a statement that I have complied with relevant ethical requirements regarding independence, and to communicate with them all relationships and other matters that may reasonably be thought to bear on my independence and, where applicable, actions taken to eliminate threats or safeguards applied.