Gauteng social development leaves R90m unspent

Gauteng's health and social development minister, Ntombi Mekgwe. (Cornel van Heerden, Gallo)

Gauteng's health and social development minister, Ntombi Mekgwe. (Cornel van Heerden, Gallo)

Meanwhile shortages of funds have been so critical during the past financial year that various non-governmental organisations (NGOs) had to scale back on services and retrench personnel, Beeld reported on Monday. 
 
A few NGOs had to close down completely, Dr Jackie Loffell, the coordinator of the Gauteng forum for welfare, social services and development, told a mass meeting on Friday.
 
“What people are really unhappy about, is that so much was underspent, while we could really have done something with that money,” Loffell said.
 
Gauteng’s departments of health and social development were initially joined, with Ntombi Mekgwe as provincial minister, but Gauteng Premier Nomvula Mokonyane decided Mekgwe would, in future, focus only on health because of a large-scale crisis in the department.
 
The departments of social development and agriculture and rural development merged in April under provincial minister Nandi Mayathula-Khoza.
 
Social development department head Shoki Tshabalala said at Friday’s meeting that the process of merging with the health department had resulted in a “a cash flow problem”, and that this was the main reason the R90-million had not been spent. – Sapa
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