Appropriations Bill Debate

Remarks by Mrs Pat Lebenya-Ntanzi MP

   

26th May 2010

 

Honourable Speaker,

 

Distribution of funding from the National Revenue Fund to the state departments is both critical and central to the economic and social development of our country. It is therefore imperative that this distribution is properly planned, and implemented strictly according to plan, as we are dealing with finite fiscal resources and cannot afford the luxury of second guessing ourselves.

 

Central to the point of effective distribution is the concept of "value for money". Many of our state departments still receive qualified audit reports from the Auditor Generals office indicating poor management of funding which results in ineffective service delivery. It seems that a culture of general unaccountability regarding fiscal funding is being allowed to develop in certain departments and this is most worrisome to the IFP.

 

Tender fraud and mismanagement must be identified within the departments and those responsible prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. It seems that very few staff members in state departments are ever taken to task over the fraudulent mismanagement of fiscal resources.

 

Lack of a necessary skills base in the some departments is also a major contributing factor to poor service delivery and this must be addressed as a matter of urgency. In addition, a culture of discipline, responsibility and accountability must be inculcated within the departments and staff members found in breach of their duties must be disciplined.

 

Transfers to state owned entities should be strictly monitored as there does not seem to be much supervision over these funds and they seem to be dissipated with the greatest of ease with little or no accountability attached thereto, an example being the Commission for Gender Equality.

 

State owned entities must take a long hard look at their salary structures, the fat needs to be trimmed off CEO and senior management salaries so that there is a more equitable distribution of funds for the average worker. This will result in fewer strikes, a more contented work force, effective service delivery and fewer service delivery demonstrations by the public. Whilst the IFP respects the rights of workers to partake in legitimate strike action, we question the appropriateness of the timing thereof 15 days before the World Cup.

 

The Money Bills Amendment Procedures and Related Matters Act provide us with a golden opportunity which will allow the voices of our citizens to be heard, through their respective public representatives, in terms of the allocation of resources. Service Delivery must be first and foremost on the agenda, in the past we have been hampered by issues of over and under spending, which resulted ultimately in the needs of the people on the ground not being met. This Act will empower parliamentarians to correct these imbalances.

 

Finally we would like to task the Ministers and senior management of the various departments, to take full ownership and accountability to the people of this country for the funds that they are receiving from the fiscus, seeing to it that those funds go where they are supposed to go and do what they are supposed to do.

 

We support the vote.

 

I thank you.
 

 

Contact:
Mrs Pat-Lebenya-Ntanzi MP
078 186 3619