Give us your mandate!

Give us a mandate to oppose the government going after your pension, by endorsing our letter to the finance minister.

Dear Mr Mboweni,

The pensions of all hard-working South Africans should be off limits to the government.

People have worked for many years to build up a retirement fund to provide for themselves once they have reached the end of their working lives.

The only reason that the government is now looking to possibly take away our pensions is because they have been profligate with taxpayers’ money. The government is simply spending more than it receives in revenue. When households and individuals do this, they run into debt and end up bankrupt. The government is heading down this path.

Instead of being invested in sectors which deliver a return, too much tax money and other government revenue is being wasted on inefficient state-owned enterprises, such as Eskom and South African Airways, and on mounting interest payments on debt. This spending is doing  little to help ordinary South Africans. Mr Minister, how does the fact that the government owns an airline help a child in the Eastern Cape whose school has no running water?

Our tax money must be spent wisely and give us returns. And, by returns, I do not refer only to financial returns. We know that if money is invested in our schools, universities, hospitals and clinics, and in making sure there is food on the table, South Africa will reap the benefits. The return may not financially enrich us, but we will have educated, healthy South Africans capable of contributing to this great country. That should be where our tax money goes. And if our tax money is spent productively, and government spending is brought under control, there will be no need to look to our pensions to fund government activities.

The government can and should create an environment in which greater sums in tax income can fund more and better schools, clinics, and other important infrastructure. This can be done, not by raising taxes on hard-working South Africans who already pay their fair share, but by creating an environment which encourages investment. This will lead to higher employment levels and more successful businesses.

We want to contribute to South Africa’s success, but please use our tax money wisely, and leave our pensions alone.


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