Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Gordhan settles for 'reasonable' cars

What would constitute "reasonable" I hear you ask. I know, it piqued my curiosity too. What would the Finance Minister deem "reasonable" in a land where at least 500 000 people have lost their jobs in the past six months, where thousands are rioting due to non-performance by said elected officials and also coming from the very man who said everybody had to tighten their belts?

Well, firstly, he also bought TWO cars - at a cost of R1.15 million - a pittance really *sarc* and secondly, if the cars pictured constitute "reasonable", hmm, the ANC has a weird concept of "reasonable". I wonder how the poor man is coping. Fiddling while Rome burns.

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Although he has bought two new official vehicles, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan appears to have heeded his own call for a tightening of "footloose" government spending.

As controversy rages about R1-million-plus cars bought by at least two new ministers, Gordhan has spent about half of the maximum amount the ministerial handbook allows cabinet members.

In answer to a parliamentary question from the Democratic Alliance, he said he had spent just under R1.15-million on his two new Pretoria and Cape Town official vehicles - a Lexus GS 300 SE and an Audi A6 3.0T.

This is significantly less than the R2.1m spent on two BMWs by Communications Minister Siphiwe Nyanda and Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga's new BMW 7 series and Range Rover Sport, with a combined price tag of nearly R1.7m.

Gordhan said he did not inherit a vehicle from his predecessor in the Treasury.
(ag, sies tog..)

In addition to the cost price of R557 673 for the Lexus and R590 500 for the Audi, he is paying about R20 000 a year on each for tracker services and insurance.

The ministerial handbook allows the replacement of a vehicle when it has clocked up 120 000km, or is five years old.

The price tag per car must not be more than 70 percent of the minister's total annual remuneration package.

DA leader Helen Zille wants this reduced to 50 percent.

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