Military Veterans Incur R2 Billion Irregular Expenditure Bill: 'Cuba Wastage Adds Up'

Military Veterans Incur R2 Billion Irregular Expenditure Bill: 'Cuba Wastage Adds Up'

  • The Ministry of Defence and Military Veterans is staring down the barrel of a huge budget deficit stemming from the 2020/21 financial year
  • Auditor-General Tsakani Maluleke‘s report on the department indicated a deficit of over R2 billion due to irregular expenditure
  • An amount of R33 million was spent irregularly when Cuban medical products were brought into South Africa without approval

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The Defence and Military Veterans Department faces a budget deficit of over R2 billion due to irregular expenditure.

According to the office of the Auditor-General, the deficit spending occurred during the 2020/21 financial year. A deficit occurs when the government, or in this case a department that is overseen by the government, exceeds its spending revenue.

Ministry of Defence and Military Veterans, Budget deficit, Financial year, Auditor General, Tsakani Maluleke, Irregular expenditure
The Department of Defence and Military Veterans has been found wanting with a deficit shortfall of over R2 billion. Image: Darren Stewart/ Gallo Images.
Source: Getty Images

Earlier in the day, SABC News carried the report of the findings of Auditor-General Tsakani Maluleke‘s report on the department’s financial statements after it was tabled in Parliament.

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It was only a month ago when IOL reported that a report to the portfolio committee on defence and military veterans had revealed almost 100 cases of corruption and fraud amounting to more than R1 billion across the various divisions of the SANDF.

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The Auditor-General's report indicates that most of the department's irregular expenditure has a direct link to the increase in the employee compensation budget, which according to reports on the ground, did not get National Treasury's approval.

R33 million is said to have been spent irregularly when SA bound medicines from Cuba were shipped in without authorisation from the Sahpra.

Curious South Africans had plenty to say about the damning revelations on social media. Briefly News takes a look at all the reactions below.

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@taqoks said:

'Shocking, I didn't know'. Eish, that is also expected when we just send soldiers to Mozambique, Gauteng, KZN and covid Hotspots."

@DianneLoom wrote:

"Million, billion, schmillion. Let's not waste time with petty cash!"

@thembelani_k added:

"All that Cuba wastage adds up."

@Gobetse_M observed:

"And Nosiviwe [Mapisa-Nqakula] was rewarded with the position of speaker of parliament for this thuggery."

@Fred32020840 lamented:

"And not a word from the government."

'Jobless' Military Veterans demand R4 million each, government rejects requests

In related news, Briefly News reported that the Military Veterans Association put forward the hefty demand for a once-off payment of R4 million from the government.

This request was on Wednesday declined after the military vets pushed to have their members compensated for the sacrifices they made during apartheid.

Thabang Makwetla, the deputy minister of defence and military veterans, revealed this during a portfolio committee meeting in parliament, TimesLIVE reported.

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Briefly News understands veterans have had long-standing grievances around unemployment and a general lack of housing.

One of the points of contention has been the nonpayment of other benefits to veterans and their families.

“The main concern which the committee must be aware of is the demand by military veterans that they [are] given a once-off R4 million payout to each of them," said Makwetla.

Source: Briefly News

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