There are fears that Finance Minister Tito Mboweni’s Medium-Term Budget Policy Statement will cut deep into the Housing Budget.
Cape Town – There are fears that Finance Minister Tito Mboweni’s Medium-Term Budget Policy Statement (MTBPS) will cut deep into the budgets of various departments, with particular concern for the Housing Budget.
Parliament’s human settlements portfolio committee was scheduled to meet today to present its first quarterly expenditure report for the 2020/21 financial year to the Portfolio Committee but the department was currently engaging with the National Treasury on further cuts to its budget.
Portfolio chairperson Machwene Semenya said: “I spoke to the finance minister and he said he had received a report from the Treasury and they were going to cut the human settlements budget. To our knowledge they are meeting Minister Lindiwe Sisulu to discuss this. As a committee we are very concerned but we want to hear what the minister says first before we predict.”
DA spokesperson for human settlements Emma Powell said: “It is likely that the department may suffer further budget cuts in tomorrow’s adjustment Budget, given the dire state of affairs at Treasury. These would be in addition to the R2.26billion already cut from the housing budget in May.
“We are, however, hoping that slippage from provinces which consistently underspend on their Human Settlement Development Grant (HSDG) allocations may be internally re-appropriated to the Western Cape, which has the country’s best HSDG expenditure track record.”
Last year, Mboweni announced that the Human Settlements directorate budget would be reduced by R14.6bn over the medium-term expenditure framework period.