Cape Town – Public Works and Infrastructure Minister Patricia de Lille has revealed that ANC ministers and their deputies are living in state-owned mansions worth nearly R1 billion collectively.
De Lille was responding to a written parliamentary question from the Democratic Alliance (DA) MP, Leon Schreiber on ministerial houses.
She said ministers and deputy ministers resided in 97 public-funded homes in Cape Town and Pretoria worth more than R967 million collectively.
In Cape Town, 26 ministers and 32 deputy ministers lived in state-owned residences, while in Pretoria, the numbers were 14 and 25, respectively, De Lille said in a statement.
She said the mansions in Cape Town were worth almost R830 million while the ones in Pretoria were worth almost R137 million.
MEDIA STATEMENT: Open letter to Leon Schreiber, DA MP on Ministerial houses. pic.twitter.com/FcEvIIMu7S
— Patricia de Lille (@PatriciaDeLille) February 28, 2023
However, De Lille said it must be noted that the houses were purchased below the current value but their value had increased over the years as per the property market trend.
In response, Schreiber said that ministers were entitled to these houses in terms of the ministerial handbook topped with luxury vehicles, VIP protection and international travel perks.
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“On average, each ministerial house is valued at nearly R10m, which means that every ANC minister and deputy minister currently lives in two mansions (one in Cape Town and one in Pretoria) valued at a collective R20m — all courtesy of South African taxpayers,” he said in a statement.
Last year it was revealed that ministers and their deputies were exempted from paying rates and had unlimited free water and electricity. It was said at the time that they were entitled to the perks as part of the executive.
This was after President Cyril Ramaphosa changed the rules of Cabinet’s perks.
“While it is accepted global practice for top government leaders such as the president, deputy president and premiers to occupy official residences — which are often located in heritage buildings or estates — it is difficult to justify why each and every ANC minister and deputy minister who presided over the collapse of every public service and government department in this country should continue to live like rock stars,” said Schreiber.
He said that his party had filed a complaint with the public protector to investigate whether the perks for officials in terms of the handbook were legal.
Picture: Twitter/ @HendricksSumaya
Compiled by Olwethu Mpeshe