R20-billion boost for municipalities

STAFF REPORTER

SOUTH Africa’s 278 municipalities, which are at the coalface of the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, are to receive R20-billion to help them deliver services and expand services to defeat the virus.

Finance Minister Tito Mboweni announced the special allocation in his supplementary budget speech which has been presented at a virtual sitting of the National Assembly. 

Mboweni said local governments received the additional R11-billion because they were at the heart of the government’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“A further R9 billion will be reprioritised within allocated conditional grants to fund additional water and sanitation provision and the sanitisation of public transport. Municipalities will adjust their budgets to take into account the sharp decline in revenue as a result of the pandemic,”  he said.

Mboweni urged communities around South Africa to hold councils accountable for the spending of COVID‐19 funds. “ The National Treasury will also monitor the spending through monthly and quarterly reports,” he pledged.