The Gauteng government has allocated a budget of R74.7 million to the department of Agriculture and Rural Development to assist farmers. This was announced by Finance and e-Government MEC Barbara Creecy on Tuesday.
She was tabling her medium term budget policy speech in the legislature. She said the money would be used to assist farmers in animal health care and provide food security initiatives.
“While the province remains the economic hub of the country, we are not insulated from the economic slowdown experienced by the country as a whole,” said Creecy.
“Our medium term budget takes account of the daily experiences of our people.”
Farmers are facing a big challenge caused by drought conditions that have hit some parts of the country. But Creecy did not say whether her budget allocation to the department was particularly aimed at providing relief to the agricultural sector.
However, Gauteng finance spokesperson for the DA, Ashor Sarupen, said the budget allocation came at bad time because the effects of drought have already taken their tool on the province’s farming community.
“It is too late. We have already seen the effects of drought, like the cattle that have died,” said Sarupen.