FF Plus reaction to medium term budget statement

Dr Pieter Mulder

The question is why it has taken nearly 20 years since 1994 for government to realise that the wasting of funds on luxurious ministerial houses and on credit cards sends a wrong message to the public and is not affordable.

The FF Pus welcomes this savings measure and restrictions on luxury state expenses which minister Pravin Gordhan announced as part of his medium term budget statement.

The reasons for the stricter measures are the lower revenue from taxes which the state had collected and definitely the forthcoming election.

In the past 19 years the government had grown accustomed to the tax revenue being more than what was predicted. The minister of finance has now announced that less tax had been received than was expected. Where the mining sector had in the past brought in R22 billion, it only brought in R12 billion this year. The mining strikes therefore are causing great damage to the economy and tax revenue.

The proposed savings measures, such as less luxury housing and refreshments, will not save as much taxes as it will be sending out a strong message about the crisis in which the economy and state finances find itself in. Selfish trade unions who only think of their own members by demanding increases of up to 60% are some of the most serious South African economic problems. If government is not going to succeed in reducing the huge current account deficit fast, South Africa’s credit ratings can be downgraded again.

“As deputy minister I do not make use of a ministerial house in Cape Town or Pretoria and I also do not have a credit card. With the purchase of the official vehicle which the department purchased in 2009, the DA guideline of 50% was followed and the not the ministerial handbook’s 70%,” Dr. Pieter Mulder, leader of the FF Plus said.

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