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Gauteng budget allocates R40.8bn to education

Finance MEC Barbara Creecy detailed how the provincial government will use the R108 billion budget to fund key priorities in the next financial year.

Picture: EWN.

JOHANNESBURG – Gauteng Finance MEC Barbara Creecy tabled a budget of R108 billion for the 2017/18 financial year in the legislature this morning.

The budget provides a detailed breakdown of how the provincial government will use available resources to fund key priorities in the next financial year.

As expected, the Education Department remains the single largest budget item in the province.

The department has seen an increase in its budget allocation, from R39.5 billion to R40.8 billion in this financial year.

The budget for the Health Department has risen to R40.2 billion.

Creecy says improving health care and restoring public confidence in the health system is a major priority this year.

Funds have also been allocated for patients with mental health conditions.

"Over the medium term R893.8 million has been allocated to support mental health patients."

This follows the Esidimeni tragedy which claimed the lives of more than 100 mentally ill patients.

Creecy says when the alternative dispute resolution process is complete, government will appropriate any necessary resources for the families of the victims from the provincial revenue fund.

A total of R44.4 billion has been set aside for infrastructure.

The MEC also allocated R2.8 billion for more housing projects across the province.

Creecy says preliminary independent analysis of Gauteng’s infrastructure spending for the period 2013-2016 was R30 billion, which created 92,000 direct jobs, adding R15 billion to household income and raising R6 billion in government revenue.

The MEC also allocated R4.2 billion to Social Development Department to fight poverty in the province.

Gauteng Finance MEC Barbara Creecy tabled a budget of R108 billion for the 2017/18 financial year with the Education Department remaining the single largest budget item in the province.  Picture: EWN