Tax hike would be detrimental for battling S. Africans, warn opposition parties

Opposition parties said that all indications were that Finance Minister Tito Mboweni would slap South Africans with a tax increase.

FILE: Finance Minister Tito Mboweni delivers his Medium-Term Budget Policy Speech in Parliament on 28 October 2020 in Cape Town. Picture: GCIS.

CAPE TOWN - No tax increases, vaccine rollout spending details and no costly bailouts of state-owned enterprises.

These were just some of the issues raised by opposition parties who wanted Finance Minister Tito Mboweni to include them, when he tables his budget on Wednesday afternoon.

Mboweni will deliver his Budget speech this afternoon and is expected to give details of finance for the vaccine rollout and economic recovery.

Opposition parties said that all indications were that Mboweni would slap South Africans with a tax increase.

While the government has to find additional sources of revenue to fund its economic recovery, parties said that a tax increase would be detrimental for already burdened South Africans.

The Democratic Alliance (DA)’s Geordin Hill-Lewis: "This is definitely a very real risk. Treasury said last October that they were considering measures, which is Treasury language for 'we're considering higher taxes' and I think it will be but it's the wrong decision, it's a bad decision, we can't afford extra taxes now."

Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) deputy president Elphas Buthelezi said that SOEs should be privatised and not bailed out. He says the vaccine programme should also be the focal point.

"I've been on record as saying stop pouring money into the bottomless pits called SOEs. Privatise them."

FF Plus finance spokesperson Wouter Wessels said that what his party did not want to hear was more lifelines to public enterprises, saying they should be either closed or privatised.

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