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By Dimakatso Modipa

City of Tshwane executive mayor Cilliers Brink and MMC for Finance Jacqui Uys after delivered the capital city’s 2024/2025 Budget Speech photo by Dimakatso Modipa

City of Tshwane MMC for Finance Jacqui Uys delivered the capital city’s 2024/2025 Budget Speech amid the usual rumblings and mumblings by ANC and EFF Councilors.

In her opening remarks, Uys made it clear that the budget does not promise a utopia but is aimed at establishing a strong building block to turn around the City’s financial position.

“The city has improved its audit outcomes from adverse opinion to a qualified audit outcome,” she said.

“We managed to clear two of the three adverse findings identified by the Auditor General, and we are now focusing on changing the third one relating to property plant equipment,” said Uys.

“At the same time Moody’s ratings changed the City’s financial outlook to stable, while Ratings Afrika found that the City of Tshwane achieved the best improvement in financial sustainability among all Metros in 2023,” she said.

Uys announced that the City’s tariff increases are in line with inflation rate and are as follows: 5% for water and sanitation ,5% for refuse refuse removal, *5% for property rates.

“Outside our control is the increase imposed on us by our bulk electricity supplier Eskom, leading to an increase of 12% in electricity,”; said Uys.

“As part of our efforts to support and offer social relief to our residents, all residential properties are not charged any property rates for the first R150 000 value of the property,” she said.

“Furthermore, registered indigent households pay no property rates and continue to benefit from various social relief packages offered by the City,” said Uys.

She said one of the City’s priorities is to stabilise its finances and that can only be achieved by capacitating our revenue collection work streams to support the Tshwane Ya Tima campaign.

Uys revealed that 40 000 letters of demand have been sent to defaulting consumers who run up high service bills but fail to pay the city.

According to Uys, Tshwane Ya Tima campaign is all about ensuring that residents stop the pervasive culture of non-payment of services rendered.

Responding to the Uys’ Budget Speech, EFF Councilor and caucus Chief Whip Godwin Ratekwane said the following: ” We are very much disappointed because this is a cosmetic budget, it was a cold budget, it doesn’t warm anybody up and one could pick it up that there was absolutely no confidence in the voice and posture of the MMC.

“We don’t believe that the DA-led administration will do whatever it says it will do,” emphasised Ratekwane.

“We have also heard blatant lies from the MMC saying they have already cleared damning reports from the Auditor General against the City,” said Ratekwane.

“We as the EFF are going to interrogate Uys’ claims because we can’t allow perjury and wrong information to be transported and circulated among the residents because the MMC is deliberately misleading Council” he said.

Ramatekwane emphasised that the MMCs budget is not pro poor and that it is aimed at serving affluent white suburban areas.

He pointed out that the DA-led administration has been in power in the City of Tshwane since 2016 and that it has failed ever since and must therefore be removed.

ANC Councilor Frans Boshielo said Uys’ budget speech was boring and lacked substance and bemoaned the fact that credit control measures adopted by the City of Tshwane municipality won’t be helpful at all because they are punitive instead of incentivising residents to pay.

Boshielo also lamented the fact that the budget is geared at serving affluent white areas.

“For the past seven years the DA-led administration has been struggling to implement the poorest of the poor (POP) system because they don’t care about the poor,” said Boshielo.

In a media interview after her speech Uys revealed that a 5,1% salary increase will be granted to all the City’s employees depending on the outcome of the Bargaining Council’s outcome regarding salary increases.

Uys pointed out that these salary increases won’t be backdated as anticipated by labour unions like SAMWU, whose workers had embarked on a prolonged strike for salary increases last year.

She also revealed that R450 million has been allocated to the Rooiwaal Water Treatment Plant and will be rolled over in the next three financial years.

City of Tshwane Mayor Cilliers Brink added that the Rooiwaal Water Treatment Plant project will take many years to complete, and that more money will be sought from the national government and the private sector.

See attached for MMC JACQUI Uys’ full Budget Speech.

City of Tshwane Budget Speech 2024-MMC Jacqui Uys FINAL-edited

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