EFF STATEMENT ON THE BUDGET VOTE BY THE LIAR MALUSI GIGABA
The EFF re-iterates its rejection of Malusi Gigaba and calls on Ramaphosa to remove him as a Minister of Finance with immediate effect. We further view his budget as still committed to the protection of capitalist accumulation which has not led over the past 24 years to any meaningful investments.
This is characterised by refusing to raise Corporate Income Tax, instead of punishing consumers by raising Value Added Tax, Fuel Levies as well as Personal Income Tax. The spending power of government is not way above the money they collect because they are facing an economy without massive growth. Even the projections of growth remain in modest figures of 2.1% in 2020. This is still way below what economies that even have worst industrial features than South Africa have. For instance, Ethiopia reported a growth rate of 8% in 2017.
Yet, there is no sign of concrete plans to grow the economy and create sustainable jobs. The misguided neo-liberal reliance on market forces to lead economic development and resolve inequalities, create jobs, and grow the economy has failed dismally.
An economic strategy that will lead to a massive breakthrough in economic development lies in the nationalisation of banks to ensure the redirection of liquid capital sorted in our private banks into job-creating industries in our country.
Because of the dismal failure of this movement to lead meaningful and massive industrial development to create sustainable jobs, increasing grants and pension is a welcome development. The increase of grants from R380 up to R410 by October this year. As well as an increase of R1600 up to R1700 by October this year.
The allocation of R19 billion for fee-free higher education is way inadequate to fund the massive need for fee-free education. According to projections by the Parliament Budget Office estimated cast of study for all needy students is R83 billion this year alone. In essence, to fund higher education for all poor academically deserving students, we need to radically expand universities to accommodate over 2 million students that need to access higher education.
Finally, the allocation to Local government remains at 9% of the total revenue. Local government is at the coalface of service delivery in our country, yet it gets a small allocation setting it up for failure.
Statement issued by the Economic Freedom Fighters, 21 February 2018