DA stages walk-out to halt Gauteng adjustment budget

By Adriana Randall MPL, DA Gauteng Shadow MEC on Finance:

The DA today walked out of the Gauteng Provincial Legislature, and prevented the 2015/16 Gauteng Midterm Adjustment budget from being tabled and approved.

The walk-out comes as a result of the ANC’s refusal to adhere to due process as set down by the Division of Revenue Act (DorA) and hold public consultation meetings as is required by law.

In Gauteng, no effort was made to advertise public hearings for feedback on the bill for the public to comment on where funds would be allocated in the midterm adjustment budget.

One of the reasons for this must surely have been the allocation of an additional R 135 million to the e-Tolls project, which the ANC is insistent on rubber stamping despite massive public contempt for the project.

This government, despite its talk of transparency, refuses to walk the walk.

The Standing Rules of Order of the Gauteng Provincial Legislature demand that a majority of all members must be present when a vote is taken on a Bill or amendment to a Bill.

The DA’s walk-out reduced the numbers in the house to less than the required 37, force Speaker Ntombi Mekgwe to defer the bill to the next sitting.

The Legislature is scheduled to rise for recess tomorrow.

The DA will not stand by and watch institutions and the mechanisms of democracy erode because the ANC chooses to trade transparency for expediency.