MEC for Finance in Gauteng Budget welcomed but questioned on the Infrastructure department

GAUTENG’S R400 billion Budget- a catch two- situation.

As always political parties had a field day, following the budget allocation by MEC for Finance Nomantu Nkomo-Ralehoko this week.

Education, health and social development departments received the lion-share of the allocated R400bn for the 2022/2023 financial year.

R6.3 billion was allocated to the department of Human Settlements and R8 billion towards the refurbishment of roads and transport in the province.

Troubled department of Infrastructure has been allocated R36 billion over the next three years. The department’s officials were involved in scandals and malfeasance after the Special Investigating Unit probe linked them to the irregular refurbishment of the AngloGold Ashanti Hospital on the West Rand.

Half-burnt Charlotte Maxeke Hospital, Edenvale, Leratong and Chris Hani Baragwanath were allocated R36 billion for refurbishment.

To address youth unemployment, the MEC announced an allocation of R2.4bn to fund the creation of youth-centred employment opportunities.

This includes a total of R2bn set aside over the next two years from the Presidential Youth Employment Initiative to enable the Department of Education to employ 40 000 unemployed young people to assist in the implementation of various education sector youth employment programmes, including teacher assistants and administrative assistants.

She allocated R13.1bn to enable the Department of Community Safety to hire approximately 400 more patrollers to fight crime in the province.

Nkomo-Ralehoko said:” Gauteng has developed a revenue enhancement strategy that is anchored around two pillars focused on optimisation of current revenue sources and exploring new revenue streams, such as online Renewal of Motor Vehicle Licences, roadside advertising, Gauteng Broadband Network Commercialisation and the automation of casino licence operations.”

The R400bn will be utilised for the next three-years to grow the provincial economy, fight unemployment and expand public services to its citizens, amongst others.

Opposition parties such as EFF and DA said the budget was not “entirely inclusive” and that the Infrastructure department be done away with.

Image (MEC for Finance in GP Nomantu Nkomo-Ralehoko presenting her Budget).

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