A UDC Government would increase public servant salaries by 17 percent with immediate effect, said Party Vice President Ndaba Gaolathe when responding to the Finance minister’s 2017/18 budget speech that was delivered on Monday. Gaolathe offered his party’s own version of the budget, saying they would set on a path of creating a highly productive and incentivised workforce. “Salary increases in the ensuing years would decline, and plans put in place to set a transparent manner for adjusting salaries based on inflation, performance and exceptional skill. “In order to improve sustainability, government will need to improve revenues, decrease costs, or both. Retaining the appropriate balance of these levers will be important as the country is in a critical stage where it needs careful stewardship in order to catapult our economic development. We can take inspiration from other countries that have led in the path of improving government. “We will Restructure the government budgeting process. We have already indicated that the Parliamentary Budget office will play a key role in enabling an efficient budget process.
“We will Introduce transparency and aggressive monitoring and evaluation: in order to drive delivery, government should increase transparency with a rigorous and public monitoring mechanism. We propose the government publish on a monthly basis statistics that show expenditure, efficiency, and progress in implementation of projects “We will digitise government processes to raise cost efficiencies: there are numerous opportunities for increased digitization to reduce processing costs, paper and handling costs; create greater transparency in reporting; and to improve ability to detect fraud through analytics. There are numerous opportunities to achieve this including, for example, extending BURS digitization of VAT to include personal tax returns, as is done elsewhere in countries like USA, Kenya, South Africa, or Estonia where over 80% of citizens use e-government platforms and over 90% file taxes online. “We will manage contractors for efficiency: the government spent billions procuring services last year. There are many initiatives the government can launch to improve our ability to manage our service providers for cost. First, we should improve transparency of expenditures across all contracts to ensure that we are able to make savings.
Our proposed amendments or proposed expenditure modifications (see appendix for exact figures)
Ministry of State President
We will reduce spending mainly fighter jets and associated expenses
Ministry of Transport
We will Construct of the north-south dual carriage way
Ministry of Tertiary Education
We will enhance high-speed broadband access to key sectors, and enhance the digital agenda for unbanked communities
Ministry of Local Government and Ministry of Basic Education
We will construct and procure of equipment and facilities for sports/music/art/science development programmes for early stage.
Ministry of Housing
We will pursue higher targets for accelerated land servicing programmes for residential housing We will establish a mortgage guarantee scheme.
Ministry of Minerals, Energy and Green Technology
We will establish a Green Fund, for eco-friendly sustainable businesses and citizens/communities involved in tourism projects .
Ministry of Agriculture
We will expand efforts to make available irrigatable land in key arable areas
We will establish a Parliamentary Budget/Economics Office and enhance the legislative drafting capacity of Parliament
All ministries attending to Education
We will step up and put in place a systematic school maintenance mechanism for both primary and secondary schools (for equipment, student/teach facilities, housing, buildings).