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EDITORIAL | Godongwana has made all the right noises. Now the ...

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EDITORIAL | Godongwana has made all the right noises. Now the state must play its part

Government desperately needs to improve infrastructure, create jobs and get tough with money-guzzling SOEs

The fuel price is rising to R21 per litre on Wednesday, another shock to South Africans’ already empty pockets. Interest rates are rising, electricity tariffs are going up by nearly 10% and economic growth is expected to decline to about 2% this year, according to economists surveyed by the Bureau of Market Research. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine will see international oil prices spiral, worsening SA’s outlook.

The following might not mean much to the cash-strapped man in the street — but it could have been even worse. While the sharp fuel hikes will hurt all South Africans, it is worth noting that finance minister Enoch Godongwana in his budget speech announced the general fuel and Road Accident Fund (RAF) levies will not increase this year.

The RAF is in such financial straits, a zero increase is a disaster for the agency, yet Godongwana and the government put the SA consumer first, instead of assisting another failing, badly managed state instrument. Godongwana also said if the government had increased the levies to make up for lost e-toll income, an additional 74c would have had to be added to the fuel price. That is why it was not an option...

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