Nxesi asked to explain 'obscene' spending

2013-01-20 16:33

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Johannesburg - Public Works Minister Thulas Nxesi must explain how R65 million was spent renovating ministers' houses, the DA said on Sunday.

"Some of the amounts spent on renovating just one house are, frankly, astronomical," said DA MP Anchen Dreyer.

"Minister Nxesi needs to explain why the decision was made to spend so much money on renovations, and he must provide a detailed breakdown of the expenditure," she said.

The Sunday Times reported that Nxesi made the admission in response to a parliamentary question on 14 December.

The renovation bills reportedly included: R15m on a Cape Town house allocated to Rural Development Minister Gugile Nkwinti, R10.67m to overhaul a house earmarked for use by Transport Deputy Minister Lydia Chikunga, and just under R5m to upgrade a house for Agriculture Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson.

"Minister Nkwinti does not have power over state assets or the homes. He just takes whatever the department of public works allocates," his spokesperson Mtobeli Mxotwa told the Sunday Times:

Chikunga told the newspaper it was "unfortunate and unfair" to be linked to the exorbitant spending.

"I have never requested renovations of R10m," she said.

Dreyer said the expenditure was "obscene".

"Surelythe money would have been better spent on upgrading facilities such as the run-down police station in Carletonville and the police barracks in Durban that I visited last year."

Dreyer said she would now ask Nxesi to explain why so much money had been spent on renovations.

- SAPA

Read more on:    da  |  tina joemat-pettersson  |  thulas nxesi  |  anchen dreyer  |  gugile nkwinti  |  government spending  |  politics
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