Declaration of Vote in the 2011-2012 KZN Appropriation Bill
By Roman Liptak MPL
Shadow KZN MEC For Finance KZN Legislature

 

Pietermaritzburg, 14th April 2011

Madam Speaker

 

The Official Opposition has called for divisions on those Votes and Programmes in the 2011/2012 KwaZulu-Natal Appropriation Bill which, in our view, have a history of ineffectiveness and inefficiency, offer little or no value for money into the future, or where we have presented more credible alternative policy proposals. The Votes and Programmes we oppose are as follows:

 

Vote 1 (Premier): Programme 3 (Policy and Governance)

 

We oppose the R22-million allocation to the Youth Ambassadors programme. This is the third successive allocation to the programme in the absence of business plans, including specific budgetary requirements and performance targets for the Youth Ambassadors and their selection criteria and monitoring by the Office of the Premier. We are not convinced this initiative serves its declared purpose.

 

Vote 2 (Provincial Legislature): Programme 1 (Administration)

 

We oppose the budget allocation for the administration of this Legislature because we do not believe that the significant increases in allocations towards Compensation of Employees and Goods and Services have led to measurable improvements in the performance of this institution. The increased allocations most certainly have not resulted in improved staff support for portfolio committees or Hansard services.

 

Vote 4 (Economic Development and Tourism): Programme 2 (Integrated Economic Development Services)

 

We oppose the allocations for the KZN Growth Fund and the SMME Fund. Although these allocations have now been reduced, the current structure of these support programmes is not equitable or transparent and, judging by their track record, the current framework does not provide for sustainable job creation. During the previous financial year, the Department of Economic Development spent some R195-million on support for small and medium-sized businesses while this amount created only 995 jobs. We believe that our alternative proposal for a wage subsidy administered by these public entities would be more equitable, transparent and more conducive to sustainable job creation.

 

Vote 8 (Human Settlements): Programme 3 (Housing Development)

 

We oppose the budgetary framework for the administration of the Housing Settlements Development condition grant. The lack of capacity led to the surrender of R80-million from this grant to the National Treasury from the allocation for the previous financial year. We oppose roll-overs and further allocations for programmes with a history of underspending on principle and there was little in the department’s budget presentation to convince us that its capacity for the spending of conditional grants has improved.

 

Vote 13 (Social Development): Programme 1 (Administration)

 

We oppose the allocation for the administration of the Department of Social Development because the proportion of spending on administration has been steadily rising at the expense of service delivery and without any improvement in productivity. If the department is to justify its current spending trends, it needs to expedite service delivery and improve the monitoring of performance of its employees.

 

I thank you. 

 

Contact:
Roman Liptak
078 302 0929