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National Assembly to vote on Mboweni's February Budget

The Appropriations Bill has to be passed by Parliament before Mboweni can table a Special Adjustments Budget to deal with the financial demands posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Finance Minister Tito Mboweni. Picture: @TreasurySA/Twitter

CAPE TOWN - The National Assembly will sit for most of Friday to consider and vote on the Budget that Finance Minister Tito Mboweni tabled in February.

The Appropriations Bill has to be passed by Parliament before Mboweni can table a Special Adjustments Budget to deal with the financial demands posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mboweni is set to table his emergency Budget on 24 June.

His February Budget aimed to reduce the budget deficit and to limit further borrowing through spending cuts and savings – mostly on the public service wage bill. It aimed to bring about structural reforms to an economy that was already limping before the lockdown brought the economy grinding to a halt.

The COVID-19 pandemic has in the words of the Financial and Fiscal Commission turned the February Budget “upside-down”.

That’s why Mboweni has to table - a new Budget a Special Adjustments Appropriations Bill - which he will do on 24 June. It will deal with measures to address the COVID-19 crisis and the money to fund them.

But before he can do that, his February Budget must first be approved, and that is what will occupy the National Assembly during its all-day sitting on Friday.

Lawmakers will consider the budget votes for every national department and their entities in a session where some will be present in the House and the rest will be linked online.

Once approved, the Appropriations Bill will go to the National Council of Provinces for its approval.

This is scheduled to happen next week.