The Democratic Alliance (DA)-led Western Cape government on Wednesday said National Treasury had lost control of the country’s public finances.
Reacting to Finance Minister Tito Mboweni’s 2020 Budget speech in Parliament, MEC for Economic Opportunities and Finance David Maynier said state-owned enterprises (SOEs) again received bailouts despite not performing.
Maynier said the national debt was spiralling out of control.
“Provinces will have to absorb significant budget cuts over the medium-term to bailout zombie SOEs, which ultimately risks compromising service delivery in provinces like the Western Cape,” he said.
At the same time, an economist warned the public sector wage bill decrease by R160.2 billion over three years was still subject to several moving parts and should not be celebrated just yet.
Nedbank economist Busisiwe Radebe said unions would play a crucial role in delivering this saving.
“The bulk of it comes from the public sector wage bill, they are going to try to cut this over the next three years. But, questions remain over whether the unions have agreed to this,” she said.