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SAYC welcomes Eastern Cape 2018 Budget, wants DSRAC allocation lowered

Mar 8, 2018
SAYC welcomes Eastern Cape 2018 Budget, wants DSRAC allocation lowered

The South African Youth Council (SAYC) in Eastern Cape on Thursday said that it welcomes the Eastern Cape 2018/2019 Budget speech that was delivered by Eastern Cape MEC for Finance, Sakhumzi Somyo, on Wednesday.

"We are particularly happy and excited by the fact that the budget speech showed collaboration between what was pronounced by the Premier on critical aspects of youth development and the budget presentation," described SAYC Eastern Cape Provincial Chairperson, Vuyiseka Mboxela.

"We have in the presentation noted the following areas of budget as critical and serves as an impetus to assess the work done by the provincial government since the adoption of the Provincial Youth Strategy in 2015."

On Education:

She said that this year’s total budget amounts to R78.2 billion for the financial year of 2018/2019.

"Out of this total budget, an amount R34.7 billion is allocated to the Department of Education over the Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) to improve the provision of quality teaching and learning in our schools.

"Whilst we note that 40% of the provincial budget is given to this department, we are then comforted by the fact that further clarity on how the money is disbursed within the department," Mboxela described.

"The distribution is particularly looking at the following critical aspects, Early Childhood Development with 785.5 million for 2018/2019, 23.5 billion is provisioned for Educators Post Provisioning Norm which is to make sure that qualified educators are found in classrooms.

"Also with the crippling and dilapidated infrastructures in many of our schools, an amount id R731.2 million is allocated whilst R2.3 billion is allocated specifically for Leaner support material and school furniture."

She said that SAYC in the Eastern Cape also noted and appreciates the specific allocation of R805.8 million for people with profound special disability to study sophisticate and specialised skills.

On Agriculture:

"As SAYC we have, on the 20 February formed a formal partnership with the Department of Agriculture and Agrarian Reform. This was as a result of sustained opportunities for youth development that the department offers," Mboxela said.

"The R2.3 billion budget allocation is mostly welcomed with an understanding that the amount 690.3 million is meant to support farmers and communities will come as a huge relief especial with the glaring focus on youth that which the department has committed itself to.

"Our sincere view is that this is the third critical department that our youth should also focus on and exploit every opportunity that are found there."

On Infrastructure and Economic growth:

She said that as the SAYC, they noted and agree with the R2.2 billion and R6.4 billion allocation for this period of three years.

"We are particularly accepting this allocation because of the firm pronouncement by the MEC that 400 million will be spent on salaries for Skilled, semi-skilled and unskilled workers who will directly be employed on the road projects," Mboxela said.

"Consistent to the 30% procurement provision, we are delighted by the fact that Treasury also confirmed this allocation for SMMEs.

"For this we are happy because it means the emerging Business will not be faced with a challenge of not growing because of lack of support financially."

Improving Skills profile of the Youth:

Mboxela said that, as SAYC, they are overjoyed and thrilled by the allocation of R1.4 Billion for 2018/2019 for the absorption of more than 20 000 graduate on an internship program which its aim is to prepare them for work place.

"We also know that this is not the best opportunity for our youth but we believe that it will go a long way in exposing our youth to the work environment. We also welcome the R7 million allocation to the Office of the Premier for purposes of continuing with the Skills program with Volkswagen Group SA in the automotive industry," she described.

"As SAYC we also welcome the R43.7 million allocations to Office of the Premier to continue with youth development projects such as Youth in Agriculture, Maritime, Youth Service and training. These projects will see a number of 400 young people benefiting in the Maritime.

"Lastly, we are joyful that a R942.8 million is allocated to Department of Sport Recreation Arts & Culture (DSRAC). We do that with a clear view that the Department has reduced all its mandate into events and boxing."

Mboxela, however, called for the more pruning of the budget in that department because they have failed to focus on the most critical aspects of the department.

"In the mid-term budget which will be tabled in the closer end of the year, we will call upon the MEC of Treasury to further cut it into slimmer size until they reshape their programs. This department is led by the MEC that all she can do is to be MC for events and radio commentator calling herself a DJ."