FS budget a ‘stand-still’

2017-03-15 06:04

David van Vuuren, DA chief whip in the Free State Provincial Legislature, has described the Free State budget as a stand-still budget.

“This budget fails to instil the hope of securing employment in the more than 485 000 jobless people in the Free State. The Free State government will remain stagnant with regards to the various programmes it has undertaken over the last several years, barely servicing these effectively.

“There are few resources made available to assist emerging farmers in the province, as well as to support commercial farmers with adequate drought relief assistance. We foresee further job losses and closures in this sector, as it continues to suffer under difficult environmental and economic conditions. While we remain cognisant of the limited resources available to fund government programmes, many of these programmes need to be re-examined and rationalised. One such programme, which has been an utter failure, is the Vrede Dairy Project. The only beneficiaries of the Vrede Dairy Project are ESTINA and its Gupta affiliates.

“The DA is concerned that the office of the premier continues to receive increased funding, which Premier Ace Magashule mostly applies towards the funding of his patronage network. It is worrying that the provincial bursary programme has now been transferred from the Department of Education to the Office of the Premier.

“To date, the provincial government has failed to take appropriate actions against implicated political principals or officials and civil servants. There is no commitment to stop corruption in the Free State, as it clearly serves the interests of the ANC political elite,” said Van Vuuren.

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