Cape Town — President Cyril Ramaphosa has defended the changes he made to his Cabinet last week after the opposition criticised him for not sticking to his commitment to decrease the size of the executive.
Ramaphosa announced two new appointments during his cabinet reshuffle.
According to the 2019 Guide for Members of the executive committee, the ministers will enjoy multiple benefits, including ministerial staff, a household aide, VIP drivers and protectors, and official motor vehicles.
Taxpayers already pay about R20 million for each minister every year, including perks, The Citizen, reported.
Meanwhile, Public Works and Infrastructure Minister Patricia de Lille revealed that ANC ministers as well as deputies occupy state-owned mansions worth nearly R1 billion collectively.
She said ministers and deputy ministers resided in 97 public-funded homes in Cape Town and Pretoria worth more than R967 million collectively.
MEDIA STATEMENT: Open letter to Leon Schreiber, DA MP on Ministerial houses. pic.twitter.com/FcEvIIMu7S
— Patricia de Lille (@PatriciaDeLille) February 28, 2023
However, Ramaphosa has defended the amount of ministries in his cabinet.
Writing in his weekly address to the nation, he said: “The new ministries I announced last week respond to our current specific needs. As I explained in the State of the Nation Address, we need a Minister to coordinate and drive our response to the electricity crisis. This is a temporary position and the Minister will remain in office only for as long as it is necessary to resolve the crisis.
“The second new ministry, for Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation, arises from an appreciation that we need a dedicated focus on ensuring that government effectively implements the programmes that underpin our priorities and is able to fix problems as they arise
“When it comes to building a capable and developmental state, the foremost consideration is how to organise every part of government, including the executive, to effectively implement the electoral mandate.
“The country’s needs will change over time and we will learn from our lived experience. Therefore, government has to adapt and be responsive.
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Compiled by Junaid Benjamin