Dr Leon Schreiber MP – DA Shadow Minister of Public Service and Administration said in a statement that the The Democratic Alliance (DA) welcomes Public Service and Administration Minister, Senzo Mchunu’s, willingness to revisit and improve the reviewed Ministerial Handbook. This follows years of sustained pressure by the DA in pushing for curbed luxuries for politicians as contained in the ‘confidential’ guide. This is to reduce “cabinet benefits and expenditure.”
The fact that the formulation of the handbook was done without consulting Parliament, is a smack in the face of the public and political parties’ Constitutional mandate to perform oversight over the Executive. The statement made it clear that the the revision of the Ministerial Handbook was long awaited and there were high hopes that the revised handbook would reduce wasteful and unnecessary luxury expenditure, but it states that it now allows for even more public money to be splashed on and squandered by members of President Cyril Ramaphosa’s Executive.
“Drastic amendments are required to put a stop to such excessive spending of the people’s money by the Executive. It cannot be that ministers are living the high life while millions of South Africans struggle to put food on the table. By simply trimming the fat, government could redirect millions to job creation initiatives, health, education, keeping our communities safe, and ultimately building a prosperous society,” said Schreiber in the statement. “The DA will be proposing measures to contain expenditure, and to reduce unnecessary privileges, like those introduced by the Western Cape Government more than ten years ago. South Africa cannot afford public money to be spent on the luxury lives of the executives while millions of South African struggles under the ailing economy and are trapped by poverty and unemployment. Public money must be used to create prosperity for the people, not to buy Porsches for politicians.”