This is Nomaindia Mfeketo's new R8m mansion - DA

John Steenhuisen - Winston Rabotapi
31 August 2011

Opposition says deputy speaker's official residence has six garages and air-conditioned bedroom

Mansions for Ministers: ANC has sold out the poor

[Note to editors: This statement was released today outside 9 Delaire Street, Van Riebeeckshof in Bellville, Cape Town. It is the newly-built secondary official residence of Deputy Speaker Nomaindia Mfeketo paid for by the Department of Public Works.]

There is something wrong when the government of a developing country - in the midst of a financial crisis - spends R183 million on brand new mansions for Ministers. This is money that could have been used to house around 2,000 poor families.

This expenditure is a sign that government has got its priorities wrong. It is a sign that the ANC has sold its promise of a "better life for all" in exchange for a life of state-funded luxury. 

We are standing today outside the official Cape Town residence built for the Deputy Speaker, Nomaindia Mfeketo. It has an air-conditioned bedroom, a designer kitchen, an outdoor entertainment area with pool, a terraced garden and six garages. This house was custom-built for the Deputy Speaker at a cost of R8 million. To make matters worse, she reportedly owns a private residence just 9 km away. 

This mansion is but one of the 34 new houses bought for Ministers in Pretoria and Cape Town. There are five ministerial mansions in this suburb alone. An in-depth investigation published in a weekend newspaper revealed that the Cape Town residences cost an average of 120% more than the City's valuations and 26% more than the estimated market value.

Such opulence is an insult to every child in need of a decent education, every sick person in need of quality public healthcare and every family living in an informal settlement. Not only that, it is an indication of skewed priorities in the Department of Public Works.

In the latest Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) plan, only R15 million was budgeted for making public buildings accessible to the disabled - enough to equip just 64 buildings country-wide.  By contrast, R284 million was earmarked for what is called the "prestige management" programme. This money will be spent on buying and maintaining residences for Members of the Executive and "some aspects of the Judiciary and the Legislature." The "prestige" programme accounts for over one-fifth of the Department of Public Works' entire infrastructure budget.

This cannot be right. And we cannot just stand by and let the government get away with it.

I today call on the Minister of Public Works, Gwen Mahlangu-Nkabinde, to re-evaluate her Department's decision to spend millions of rands on new mansions for Ministers. At the very least, she should reverse the decision to buy secondary residences for Ministers to stay in when they are in Cape Town.

This expenditure on mansions is illustrative of the tendency of government ministers to spend public money on themselves instead of on front-line services for the poor. We therefore repeat our call for Minister Baloyi to produce the long-awaited review of the Ministerial Handbook. It has been over two years and no discernible progress has been made.

I have also asked a number of questions in Parliament to ascertain the extent of this power abuse. These include:

  • Why 6 ministries require 34 new houses
  • Why it was deemed necessary to spend an average of R5.4 million per house
  • The cost of fittings and furnishings for all these properties, as well as the monthly maintenance costs
  • Whether Ministers have been paying market-related rentals for their secondary official residences in Cape Town as prescribed by the Ministerial Handbook
  • Why Ministers have not made use of the ministerial estate at Groote Schuur in Cape Town instead of buying new houses
  • Exactly how these properties were procured and whether market-related prices were paid
  • Whether all properties are in compliance with town planning regulations and are up to date with all municipal service charges
  • How the Department can justify spending over 20% of its infrastructure budget on prestige properties, but only 1% on making public buildings accessible to the disabled.

Besides the answers to these questions, we await the outcome of the Special Investigative Unit's probe into the Department's property procurement programme. Clearly, we are not the only ones who think that something is amiss here.

The DA will not rest until we have put a stop to the excessive spending on ministerial luxuries that do not benefit the poor. It is time that government got its priorities right. It is time that Public Works started working for the public.

Joint statement issued by John Steenhuisen MP, DA Shadow Minister of Public Works and Winston Rabotapi MP, DA Shadow Deputy Minister of Public Works, August 31 2011

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If you come across comments that are injurious, defamatory, profane, off-topic or inappropriate; contain personal attacks or racist, sexist, homophobic, or other slurs, please report them and they will be removed.
 responses to this article

LMAO!!!! @ The picture

by Mthobisi Mthimkhulu on August 31 2011, 14:17
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Again DA obtuse, this is a govt property ok, an investment ne
she doesnt own it , ooooh Im sorry forgot black investment is corruption , white corruption is investment

by samsam on August 31 2011, 15:16
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Is this a government owned house, built and paid for by the state and will be occupied by whomsoever is authorised to for that particular period or term? Or is it her house and she can sell it if she so wishes. So what if its got 30 garages 4 aircons in a . .more

by Nkuza on August 31 2011, 15:24
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owning it is not the point.
uh no samsam... again the race card? you will notice you are the only one with your mindset there .. AGAIN. - the point is that there are perfectly good mansions already available! Why do these ministers need 2 official governmental residences. Why spend . .more

by Lizzie on August 31 2011, 15:29
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Are Ministers Gods who must live in palaces or are they servants of the people, of the people?
Politicians should live amonst those they were voted to serve; in the suburbs, and not on Mount Olympus. Once they become office bearers it seems, they deem themselves to be better than the people, and ENTITLED to live like billionaires. That might be OK . .more

by Mute Fool on August 31 2011, 16:54
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Viva leadership
a looting continua, it's their turn let them eat before the government resuffle, i don't care anymore, i feel sorry for the poor who keep on voting for these crook, me and my wife with our R60,000.00 per month will survive this tradegy, thanks God i'm . .more

by former cadre on August 31 2011, 17:08
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Got to love the DA - all those poor ANC ministers want is to be able to live the good life whilst grabbing as much dosh as possible using their political connections ... but the damn DA keep catching them out.

How are ANC ministers expected to . .more

by Sad Days on August 31 2011, 17:27
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ANC politicians and stooges living like Gadaffi....
And you know what happened to him and his stooges!!!!

by Ben on August 31 2011, 17:59
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Our local provincial hospital has no functioning staff toilets. The geyser in the staff bathroom has been broken for over a year. They have been waiting for money to install an X-ray unit (R 1.4million), to finish the mortuary (R 100 000) and fence the . .more

by Samjank on August 31 2011, 18:44
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@samsam - would love to see your comments on @samjank's post...

by sam?? on August 31 2011, 19:40
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@ sam??
Please do not hold your breath, samsam is either living the good life on tax payers money, or actualy hoping to live their soon!

by Mother Africa on August 31 2011, 20:37
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To point out wasteful expenditure of the ANC is not anti-black ! I am begging you with tears in my eyes ........ Please trust me there are millions of blacks that have the integrity l, the heart for our people. Why do you support the corrupt? Is it . .more

by DM on August 31 2011, 20:51
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@Sad Days : The ANC will soon settle the DA's hash!
@DM : I can't abide the murder of the English language; "criteria" is the PLURAL of "criterion" ; Hence : "if blackness is your only CRITERION...."

@Sad Days : Once the new Secrecy Bill (euphemistically called the Protection of Information . .more

by Mute Fool on August 31 2011, 22:49
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reason #726 not to pay Tutu's white wealth tax:
Nomaindia Ineffecto's R8 million mansion.

by Realist on August 31 2011, 23:43
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The politics of plunder
Again we are faced with the realities of African politics. It is about power, and power leads to opportunities to plunder the national wealth and the taxpayer. This obscene mansion for an incompetent, low-I* parasite is typical of the African's inability . .more

by Anton on September 01 2011, 06:41
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why two official mansions?
Why does the Deputy speaker need a second official residence, she has no role to play in Pretoria. Secondly, I understand she owns a house in Thornton. It would be much cheaper to pay her an allowance to stay in her own house.

by Obs on September 01 2011, 07:50
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that is why we living ANC and join parties with brains
ANC only want us to VOTE for them sothat theY can bragg and show of the luxury LIFESTYLE that they living with their children being millionares, WE ARE NOT STUPID ANYMORE, promises promises promises promises. Watch OUT 2014 THEN WE CAN TALK, ELECTION . .more

by smangele on September 01 2011, 09:26
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The politics of plunder knows no race.
It is a pity that people are still being misled to think that Africans are only capable of plunder alone and nothing else. The politics of race are so outdated and we need to move on in this country and stop looking at everything through the eyes of race. . .more

by Black African on September 01 2011, 10:10
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@samsam and @Nkuza
I take it that neither of you are disabled. Go tell someone confined to a wheelchair that it is only fair that Mfeketo gets a couple of mansions, while they cannot even access a government dept building go collect thier grants.

by Jeff on September 01 2011, 11:33
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Ministerial Mansions
Me thinks, the ANC is seeing the writing on the wall. They will not be in power for very much longer, so they grab what they can, while they can.

by Horrified on September 01 2011, 21:59
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well, f*** you too, government
this is one massive middle-finger to regular south africans. the audacity is staggering. vote for us, we'll do you right. f*** off, you selfish, arrogant, bottom-feeding excuses for human beings. have you no conscience? have you no principles? well fine, . .more

by guy on September 02 2011, 12:37
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Poor Thinking
Why Can't we think positivelly? this is not news but rather peace of rubish, when Isian's are thinking positive, we are thinking negative always sparking fires for more problems.
Human being first priority is homes and foods, so state property or . .more

by Peter on September 14 2012, 14:37
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