Concerned about the near collapsed political and economy state of the country, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan chose to turn to South African citizens to for solution on how to turn things around positively for the country.
Minister Pravin said Africans should share their views about economic conditions and other issues they would like government to highlight in the Medium Term Budget Policy Statement (MTBPS) on 26 October 2016.
The MTBPS will be presented against the backdrop of the state’s staggering economy, the looming threat of a possible negative view by independent rating agencies, fees must fall campaign, corruption in the nation’s politics, as well as uncertainty in the global economic conditions.
Report said Minister Pravin particularly requested that South Africans should make suggestions on social media. He requested public views on:
- Funding of free educations for students in tertiary institutions;
- How South Africa can achieve inclusive economic growth;
- How South Africa can use its resources to ensure efficiencies; and
- How the government, civil society, unions and business can work together in oneness of purpose to achieve the economic objectives of our country.
As expected, a good number of individuals have aired their view. On free tertiary education, a good number of citizens suggest that free education policy be made a priority as it is one of the rights citizens are supposed to enjoy.
While some suggest the introduction of different tiers for subsidies where students who achieve over 80% get free education and those who fail (under 50%) do not – with various ‘fee discounts’ in between, another good number of citizens suggest that education board narrow the number of students by raising entry requirements, and directing those who do not qualify to other tertiary options.
Other suggestions made on this topic include:
- Students should pay for their own accommodation. In this way, they might actually start taking some responsibility for it
- Raise VAT by 1%-2% to finance tertiary education, because “we should all pay for higher education”
- Unlock tribal land so that rural families can leverage the land that they live on for their children’s education, among others.
On the issue of stabilizing the economy, many say this can only be achieved if corruption is massively dealt with. A good number of respondents also suggest a good cut on government spending, especially around President Jacob Zuma.
Other suggestions include:
- Scrap the deputy minister posts and stop giving unnecessary political posts “Its a waste of money”,
- Cutting all MP and government salaries, bringing them in line with international levels;
- Privatize state-owned companies;
- Call off the plans for nuclear power
No doubt these topics are crucial and need urgent strategy to address them and government still needs your opinion on the best ways to address them, so chip in your bit.