- Enoch Godongwana has dumbed down the scale of the crime crises affecting the country
- The finance minister was speaking to investors during an online panel discussion on Sunday
- South Africans reacted to Godongwana's comments with scepticism on social media
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Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana has taken a very different stance on the crime crises in South Africa, telling investors not to be deterred from investing in the country.
The minister, who took over the Finance Ministry in August after Tito Mboweni's resignation, described the crime in the country as merely "isolated" incidents during an online panel discussion on Sunday.
Godongwana further assured investors that improving safety and security is one of the government's top priorities, News24 reported.
"I would urge people to invest in South Africa. We cannot let an isolated incident, which is not a feature of our society, be a reason for lack of investment," said Godongwana.
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Crime stats paint different picture
Shockwaves rippled across the country in July after widespread public violence and looting broke out in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal, further exacerbating an already prevalent scourge.
According to the Presidency, a total of 354 people lost their lives while a large number of businesses and other property were destroyed in the wake of the unrest.
The latest police statistics indicate South Africa experienced just under 5 800 murders in the three months through between April and June, equating to an average of 62 murders per day.
South Africans on social media tended to disagree with the sentiments expressed by Godongwana.
Briefly News takes a look at some of the interesting commentary below.
"Ndakubetha isolated. Kaloku, they live in high fenced suburbs, have bodyguards and and and, that's why crime is termed isolated incidents. Lamasela!"
"That's a shaky and dangerous statement given the structural weaknesses in the criminal justice system. The weaknesses are there for all to see. And there no prosecutions of prominent people. Many cases remain unprotected. How can he call this incidental?"
"The investors will believe this is coming from the FinMin from an honest and ethical movement. Don't forget we don't have major crimes all crimes in SA is considered petty crimes by the ANC. Makes the law enforcement agencies work easier."
SARS collects more tax revenue than estimated, R1 249 billion collected
In related news, Briefly News reported that the South African Revenue Service (SARS) has had a great year of tax collection for the financial year of 2020/2021.
Godongwana, who was presenting SARS' annual report to parliament, said the revenue service collected R1.25 billion in the past financial year, adding that what was collected is R37.5 billion more than what was initially estimated,
Despite a difficult year, Godongwana says SARS fought hard to safeguard the fiscal capacity and sovereignty that had been established during the previous 27 years, according to a report by SABC News.
SARS also went over the estimated R93 billion revenue from its direct compliance activity which amounted to R171 billion. R78 billion more than what was initially estimated.
Source: Briefly News