How SA's taxpayers' money gets "wasted"
South African taxpayers contribute billions to government coffers every year (R571,8bn:2008; R495,5bn:2007), however not all of it is put to good use, billions are being wasted and tarnishing our reputation. After doing some digging MoneywebTax.co.za discovered the following incidents to be some of the worst ways government is/has "wasted" our money.
The Arms Deal: We forked out R60bn on submarines, frigates and fighter jets but the buck does not stop there, the SA Navy wants to spend billions of rands of taxpayers' money on acquiring new patrol ships because allegedly the submarines it received are duds, reports IOL.
The Arms Deal played out from 1996 to 1999, when President Thabo Mbeki chaired the cabinet subcommittee on arms procurement that put together and approved the purchase of R30bn worth of military equipment. The arms deal eventually cost us "almost double that figure owing to the unstable rand; it also mired the ANC government, at the very moment when it was re-establishing moral rule in South Africa, in an interminable bog of messy corruption scandals and investigations, forcing Mbeki to fire his deputy, Jacob Zuma, in 2005, and implicating Mbeki in multiple allegations of impropriety", reports IOL.
Zuma's legal fees: As a run on from the arms deal we have contributed R9,7m towards legal fees incurred for ANC President Jacob Zuma to fend off fraud and corruption charges.
The luxurious lifestyle of Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini: According to the Sunday Times, we splashed out R39,3m on the King and his six wives. Some of the things we've paid for are: half a million rand for clothing, R1,2m for entertainment and more than R2,5m for luxury accommodation and travel.
Subsidisng SAA: Midway through the 2007/08 financial year, we paid R744m into its coffers to assist in the airlines' restructuring. This year we could be paying R2,9bn if the Department of Public Enterprises adheres to its request. SAA asked the department for R2,9bn of new equity capital and to convert R2,8bn of existing debt into equity when it released its results in July.
Do you know of any other ways our money has been wasted? Tell us by commenting below...Want more tax news? Subscribe to MoneywebTax.co.za's weekly newsletter by clicking here or visit MoneywebTax.co.za