ANC lauds Bokone Bophirima’s 2018/2019 budget

The ANC in the province said the budget speech for the 2018/2019
financial year will ensure that key services are delivered to the people of Bokone Bophirima. NC provincial spokesperson, Gerald Modise, said the party is
happy with the budget speech that was tabled by Finance MEC, Wendy Nelson, on Thursday. “We are satisfied with the provincial budget speech because it is
aligned with the resolutions that were taken at the ANC’s 54 th National Conference. We welcome the increase in some of the
departmental budgets as it will enable some services to be elivered to the people. “We would like to welcome the support by Department of Finance, Economy and Enterprise Development (FEED) in funding the fifth administration’s concrete of Agriculture, Culture and Tourism (ACT). No economy can experience rapid growth without exploiting
these sectors through entrepreneurial activity. The number of people employed in the agricultural sector has increased from
34 000 workers in 2012 to about 48 000 by the end of 2016 which account for 14 000 additional jobs. “Education has received the biggest portion of the budget. This
indeed shows that government is serious about empowering future generations with this important tool,” said Modise. Bokone Bophirima’s Department of Education and Sport Development received the largest amount - R16.183 billion for the 2018/19 financial year.

MEC for Education and Sport Development, Sello Lehari, said the department deserves the biggest budget because it’s got the
largest number of employees.
“We welcome the announcement and we will use the money wisely. It is important to remember that we have the largest
department and we are tasked with a huge responsibility of educating the nation,” Lehari said.

The Department of Health received the second largest portion of the Provincial Budget at R11.154 billion for 2018/19, R11.934
billion and R12.884 billion in 2019/20 and 2020/21 financial years respectively.
The 2018/19 allocation includes the funding of R1.315 billion for the comprehensive HIV/AIDS and TB Grant of which R167.729
million is allocated to a new component of the Community Outreach Services Grant, National Tertiary Services Grant is
allocated R283.055 million and Health Facility Revitalisation Grant is allocated R585.886 million.
In line with the National Development Plan (NDP), the allocation will strengthen the effectiveness of the health system by increasing
life expectancy and thereby decreasing mortality rates. “We strive to equip our medical institutions across the province to
reduce shortages of medicines and medical supplies. To this end, an amount of R3.047 billion has been allocated over the 2018 MTEF with R1.350 billion allocated in 2018/19 Financial Year,” said Nelson.
The Department of Rural, Environment and Agricultural Development (READ) allocation amounted to R1.440 billion for
2018/19, increasing to R1.531 billion in 2019/20 and R1.645 billion in 2020/21 financial year.
The Department of Culture, Arts and Traditional Affairs (CATA) was allocated a budget of R732.049 million for the 2018/19
financial year increasing to R812.245 million in the outer year of the MTEF period. This allocation will amongst others, assist this
Department to preserve the rich history of this Province and by so doing creating the tourism market. MEC Nelson said community and road safety remains one of the
provincial government’s top priorities.
“The Department of Community Safety and Transport Management receives an allocation of R6.815 billion over the MTEF period. An amount of R2.163 billion is allocated for 2018/19,
R2.263 billion for 2019/20 and R2.388 billion for 2020/21,” she told
the Provincial Legislature.

The Department of Local Government and Human Settlements was allocated R7.767 billion over the MTEF, largely funded by the
Human Settlement Development Grant. An amount of R2.477 billion is allocated for 2018/19, growing to R2.570 billion in 2019/20
and R2.719 billion in 2020/21.“In pursuit of the province’s Five Concretes, this department’s allocation will contribute to the Rebranding, Repositioning and
Renewal of Bokone Bophirima through the provision of houses. The allocation will also improve access to basic services such as
water and sanitation,” said Nelson. The Department of Public Works and Roads received a budget allocation of R3.021 billion in 2018/19, increasing to R3.326 billion
in 2020/21 financial year. Of this allocation, an amount of
R960.604 million is earmarked as a conditional grant for provincial
road maintenance.