/ 20 December 2022

Enoch Godongwana (Grade C-)

Budget Speech Godongwana City Hall Dh 1267
Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana. (David Harrison/M&G)


Key Goals

  1. Stabilise the fiscus: Progress
  2. Aid economic growth: Failed
  3. Implement macroeconomic policy: Failed
  4. Enforce spending transparency: Progress


Enoch Godongwana has emerged as one of the most trusted members of President Cyril Ramaphosa’s cabinet. 

Regarded as highly rational, Godongwana’s second year in the position has seen him continue his role as the finance minister with one of the tightest grips on the country’s purse strings. And, at least for now, this has served him well — proving the “success” of fiscal consolidation.

But rating agencies and investors aren’t quite yet willing to give the finance minister their full backing. 

The reason for this — growing political pressures in the lead-up to the 2024 national elections — is not in Godongwana’s control. But the coming year will prove whether the minister’s advertised political heft will help guard the fiscus against what the corporate sector considers a populist agenda.

A finance minister has to balance the interests of two very different groups: the financiers and the voters.

The current market and economic conditions make this balance difficult. Markets are volatile and reactive to anything other than the safest bet. But the economy, struggling to grow, requires more audacious policies.

The treasury under Godongwana seems to have sacrificed growth-friendly macroeconomic policymaking to prioritise the fiscal consolidation project and structural reforms, which look good on paper but could take years to set the economy right. 

The country’s growth outlook is dire, jeopardising the sovereign’s bid for credit rating upgrades.

The treasury has also faced problems in enforcing spending transparency, because of a lack of accounting consistency across public entities. 

Godongwana has recently underlined that the quality of spending is out of his hands.

But he has committed to improve state capacity, procurement practices and contract management, which should help solve chronic underspending. 


Click on a minister
Cyril Ramaphosa
David Mabuza
Maite Nkoana-Mashabane
Fikile Mbalula
Angie Motshekga
Aaron Motsoaledi
Nathi Mthethwa
Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma
Mmamoloko Kubayi
Thandi Ruth Modise
Khumbudzo Ntshavheni
Ebrahim Patel
Naledi Pandor
Mathume Joseph Phaahla
Pravin Gordhan
Senzo Mchunu
Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams
Lindiwe Sisulu
Thokozile Didiza
Lindiwe Zulu
Patricia DeLille
Ronald Lamola
Barbara Creecy
Bheki Cele
Blade Nzimande
Mondli Gungubele
Enoch Godongwana
Gwede Mantashe
Thulas Nxesi
(Public Service and Administration)
Thulas Nxesi
(Employment and Labour)