Gauteng residents need to brace themselves for more budget cuts when the MEC for Finance, Jacob Mamabolo, delivers his adjustment budget in the Gauteng Provincial Legislature (GPL) next month. This means less money for service delivery in the province.
The Democratic Alliance (DA) in Gauteng is concerned that spending on the elevated priorities of Premier Panyaza’s TISH programme would result in budget cuts on other service delivery programmes to fund the Nansi iSpani programme.
With the Department of Health projecting a shortfall of R2,4 billion and Social Development a shortfall of R56 million, the province needs to protect the crowding out of the social package provided to our vulnerable citizens who are struggling to make ends meet.
In response to the DA’s question on our financial position, the Head of the Department of Gauteng Provincial Treasury confirmed that the province’s finances are under pressure. A revenue enhancement tender was advertised for assistance to generate more revenue for the province. An evaluation committee was also appointed in Treasury to evaluate departmental requests to fill vacancies. These measures confirm the tight balancing act the province finds itself in.
In addition, the Gauteng Provincial Government (GPG) has undertaken to pay its portion of the e-Toll debt. To date, no tangible plan has been put forward by Premier Lesufi on how the debt will be paid.
The Democratic Alliance is adamant that in order for budgeting practices and decisions to influence service delivery, they have to be guided by clear policies, consultative and ensure value for money.