Government clarifies roll-out of lodge cards

Following the announcement that travel lodge cards would be the mandatory method of payment for government travel, Phale Naake, deputy director of strategic procurement at National Treasury, made it clear that this roll-out would be gradual and only come into effect once government had introduced the online booking tool it is currently investigating.

Speaking at the ABTA Conference in Rustenburg, Naake said: “Only once we introduce the online travel system will lodge cards become mandatory.

He said: “Currently there are only a few government departments that don’t have travel lodge cards,” adding that there is some fear around their use, particularly at a provincial level. One of the areas of concern is potential interest payment, which in government is considered to be misconduct and a fireable offence on the basis of fruitless and wasteful expenditure.

“There is also the issue of reconciliation as the majority of institutions that have used travel lodge cards in the past had problems in this regard,” added Naake. He said with the introduction of electronic reconciliation by travel lodge card suppliers, these fears have been addressed. 

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