Debate in NCOP on adjustment budget for Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs:
Food security and the well being of all South Africans are supposed to be the government’s top priorities. However, the adjustment budget of the Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (COGTA) seems to be out of touch with the reality of what is currently going on in the country.
South Africa is still struggling to cope with the consequences of a multiyear drought. At the beginning of March, a national state of disaster was declared due to the severe drought conditions. Unfortunately, the Department’s budget makes almost no provision for drought disaster relief.
The ANC government is taking the agricultural community for granted and does not seem to realise that food security is in serious jeopardy if farmers do not get the support they need from the government.
The main aim of the Department is to improve co-operation between the various government spheres and in so doing, ensure that provinces and municipalities deliver services effectively. The Department has failed. The poor condition of municipalities across the country serves as proof.
The Covid-19 pandemic has forced the government to finally start delivering basic services, like water and sanitation, to many communities. The government was forced to do crisis management because for years, its priorities were wrong and service delivery was poor or non-existent. This crisis management is costing taxpayers much more than it would have cost them if the necessary maintenance and infrastructure development was done as it should have been.
Read the original article in Afrikaans by Fanie du Toit on FF Plus