DA to present Alternative Budget to tackle the cost of living crisis

Issued by Dr Dion George MP – DA Shadow Minister of Finance
17 Feb 2023 in News

The newly-released inflation statistics are a stark reminder of the crippling cost of living crisis that our nation faces. Year-on-year inflation has been recorded at 6.9% – significantly higher than the target band set by the South African Reserve Bank (SARB).

However, delving deeper into these figures highlights the severity of the crisis. Transport prices increased by a staggering 11.1% while food prices increased by 13.4%.

The price of bread, a basic food item, has risen 21.8% throughout the year alone.

The callousness of the ANC government is apparent in their failure to act. Rather than enacting economic measures to mitigate the impact of escalating costs and persistent blackouts, they have opted to rescue insolvent state-owned enterprises and sustain their corrupt patronage networks.

In his upcoming Budget speech, the Minister of Finance, Enoch Godongwana, must embrace the DA’s practical proposals to cut the fuel levy, introduce tax rebate that will free consumers from Eskom, and expand the zero-VAT rated food basket to include essential items such as bone-in chicken, beef, tinned beans, wheat flour, margarine, peanut butter, baby food, tea, coffee, and soup powder.

VAT on these items disproportionately impact the poorest 50% of South Africans who are already battling to put food on the table.

It is clear that the ANC government is far removed from the harsh reality of hunger and starvation in our country. But the DA will not sit idly by while Government plays political games with the lives of South African citizens.

On Monday 20 February 2023, we will present an Alternative Budget, replete with practical and effective solutions to enable the government to confront the cost of living crisis head-on.

The time for talk is over. The people of South Africa deserve action, and we will not rest until our proposals are implemented to alleviate their suffering.