Busa backs basic income grant idea but says govt can't afford it

The basic universal income grant is seen as a possible mechanism to alleviate poverty in the country.

FILE: Business Leadership South Africa CEO Bonang Mohale. Picture: @lead_sa/Twitter.

JOHANNESBURG - Business Unity South Africa (Busa) on Wednesday said it was not opposed to the idea of a "basic universal income grant" but believed the country couldn't afford it.

Organised business met with President Cyril Ramaphosa to discuss this contentious and divisive proposal.

The basic universal income grant is seen as a possible mechanism to alleviate poverty in the country.

But Busa's president Bonang Mohale said it was not a sustainable model.

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"This country could not afford to get onto the COVID programme. Business had to bail government out not once but twice and that's why we're in the COVID programme. To give these grants, including the R500 billion economic stimulus, government didn't have money, what it did was to reprioritise from other departments.

"So now you're take money from children, from hospitals, from education to able to fend off the pandemic, and yet we know that money was actually stolen,” he said.

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