National 8.9.2016 07:20 am

Gauteng faces massive cuts

DA leader Mmusi Maimane. File picture: Giordano Stolley/ANA

DA leader Mmusi Maimane. File picture: Giordano Stolley/ANA

The official opposition says national government slashes on service delivery grants will affect housing projects in the province.

The DA in Gauteng says there will be a “massive” reduction in the grants the Gauteng provincial government receives from national government for service delivery over the next three years.

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According to the party, the human settlement development grant will be reduced by R1.6 billion in the 2016/17 financial year, the comprehensive agriculture support programme grant by R210 million over the next three years, and the health facility revitalisation grant reduced by R365 million over the next three years.

“This will greatly impair the provincial government’s ability to deliver on its promises to provide housing and upgrade human settlements as outlined by premier David Makhura during the tabling of his office’s annual report last week,” DA Gauteng spokesperson on finance Ashor Sarupen said in a statement.

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He added that Gauteng was similarly under pressure to ensure that its healthcare facilities were able to accommodate the needs of more than 13 million people in the province.

“As much as the ANC in Gauteng tries to distance itself from President Jacob Zuma and the failings of his administration, they are still one party with the same governing philosophy, and their ability to govern Gauteng is impacted by the president’s failings,” Sarupen said.

“The Gauteng provincial budget for the 2015-16 financial year does not plug these essential gaps, but the ANC government in Gauteng still ensured that there was a flurry of pre-election billboards, marketing the provincial government and the premier.” Sarupen said despite losing out on grants, the province still saw fit to spend R100 million on “voter education” for the local government election.

– news@citizen.co.za

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