Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan presented the 2011/12 National Budget to Parliament on 23 February 2011 in Cape Town.
We are pleased to present you with a special edition of NGO Pulse which highlights the perspectives of various NGOs in response to the budget.
Issues covered by the NGO comments range from general observations about the budget to key development priorities such as job creation, education, social services, youth development and health.
Although there is much consensus that Minister Gordhan presented a balanced budget which attempts to respond to most national priorities, some contentious issues remain.
A key issue in this regard is criticism of the macro-economic framework, in particular the continued focus on inflation targeting and reducing the budget deficit. While some agree with the current approach, others feel that the government is too conservative given the resources required to deal with poverty, unemployment and other historical development challenges.
A concern highlighted by a number of NGOs relates to the ability and capacity of government departments to deliver services in line with their mandate. Specific concerns relate to lack of skills, weak administrative systems, corruption and wastage of resources which characterise many government departments.
Questions are also raised again about the lack of recognition for the role that NGOs play in responding to the needs of the poor, especially in the view of the mentioned capacity constraints experienced by government departments.
The following NGOs have commented on the budget (click on the name of organisation):
- African Monitor
- Alternative Information and Development Centre
- Alliance for Children’s Entitlement to Social Security
- Black Sash
- Catholic Parliamentary Liaison Office
- CBDP Management Education
- Centre for Early Childhood Development
- Child Welfare South Africa
- Consortium for Refugees and Migrants in South Africa
- Eastern Cape NGO Coalition
- Ecumenical Service for Socio-Economic Transformation
- Endangered Wildlife Trust
- Gauteng Welfare, Social Service and Development Forum
- Helen Suzman Foundation
- Institute for Democracy in South Africa
- International Labour Resource and Information Group
- Leadership and Innovation Network for Collaboration in the Children’s Sector
- MIET Africa
- NACOSS, NAWONGO and Western Cape Director’s Forum
- National Education Health and Allied Workers’ Union
- Neighbourhood Old Age Homes
- Ngiyabonga - Human Rights Resources Initiative
- Peoples Budget Coalition
- Readucate Trust
- Rural Education Access Programme
- SANGOCO Western Cape
- SECTION27 and Treatment Action Campaign
- South African Institute of Race Relations
- South African National Council for the Blind
- South African National Zakah Fund
- Studies in Poverty and Inequality Institute
- Trust for Christian Outreach and Education
- Tshwaranang Legal Advocacy Centre
- Umcebo Trust
- World Vision South Africa
We welcome any other NGO comments, opinions and recommendations in response to the budget and will highlight them on the NGO Pulse portal.
NGO Pulse Team, firstname.lastname@example.org