The tough questions Gordhan is pondering before his mini budget

2016-10-23 21:27
Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan (File)

Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan (File)

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Durban – Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan has given an insight into some of the difficult questions that needed to be answered when he presents his mid-term budget policy statement on Wednesday.

The minister, who began his career as a pharmacist at King Edward VIII Hospital in Durban, was speaking in a pre-recorded message to guests attending the National Pioneer Pharmacy Awards gala dinner in Durban on Saturday night.

Gordhan apologised for not attending the event, saying he was currently completing the medium-term budget policy statement.

Gordhan said: "As we seek to get better economic conditions for our people and you will hear [on] Wednesday when we deliver the midterm policy statement, we ask some difficult questions about ourselves as South Africans.
 
"How do we get higher levels of growth? How do we get higher levels of what we now call inclusive growth so that all South Africans feel that they are part of benefiting from the GDP? How do we ensure that public finances collected from your taxes is spent in the right way and is largely of benefit to the ordinary citizens of this country and not pocketed in the value chains that you are familiar with?"

He said the medical fraternity needed to ensure better access to medicines and health care, particularly for the poor.

"It is a fact of life that poor people are still made to wait [in long queues] at public places and that there is much to be done in ensuring that public servants become real public servants who go out of their way to care for people and that they leave the public health facilities that they have visited as quickly as possible, that they have been treated as efficiently as possible and treated with the necessary care that they deserve."

Gordhan also urged the fraternity to take a stand against corruption.

"Stolen bed sheets, medication, food, lack of care in our public hospitals and sometimes private hospitals as well. Supply chain interference, good invoice for but not delivered, public servants and businesses people exchanging favours in the form of brown enveloped in order for things to be done, that is corrupting us from delivering efficient  human rights to our people," said Gordhan.

Read more on:    pravin gordhan  |  economy  |  government spending

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