Public Service and Administration Minister Senzo Mchunu said government was trying to put a stop to the gravy train by capping expenditure on items like new cars for ministers and security upgrades on their private residences.
Mchunu announced the proposed changes to the Ministerial Handbook at a briefing in Tshwane on Monday. The handbook has controversially been used by ministers in the past to justify lavish travel and car expenses, while the country’s economic growth remains stagnant.
The days of ministers using taxpayer funds to erect high perimeter walls topped with electric fencing and state of the art surveillance systems are over – those expenses would soon come from their own pockets.
That was among some of the changes to the Ministerial Handbook announced by Mchunu. He said in respect of water and electricity, the state’s contribution would be limited to R5,000 per month per state-owned residence, while no contribution would be made in respect of private residences.
Mchunu added that no cleaning materials, equipment, and chemicals would be provided to these residences and ministers would be responsible for all the costs related to the domestic workers they employ.
He said the cost of new cars would be capped at R700,000, while domestic travel for the ministers and their spouses would be in economy class only.