Today's Labour News

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joburgcityCity Press writes that the financial health of the City of Johannesburg (CoJ) is on life support and could require a bailout unless something drastic is done.  

The situation is so bad that the financials show that the CoJ had a bank balance of R1.2bn at the end of April, and that a shortfall of R3.5bn was projected for last month and this month.  There is already anxiety about whether June salaries will be paid.  June marks the end of the CoJ’s financial year.  Because of its dire financial situation, the CoJ has had to dip into its reserves to compensate for the shortfall and help keep it afloat.  However, the CoJ denied last week that the DA-led administration was in the red, saying its cash balances at the end of April stood at R3.279bn.  These woes come as mayor Herman Mashaba had his hands full last week after twice failing to convince councillors to adopt the 2017/18 budget with exorbitant tariff hikes for water (14.2%) and electricity (7.37%).  At Friday’s council sitting, Mashaba succumbed to a last-minute adjustment proposed by the EFF, which resulted in rates reduced to 13.2% and 7.17% for water and electricity.  A special council meeting was due to sit on Monday and the revised budget, yet to be assessed by Treasury, will be finalised.  While the CoJ buckles under pressure, expenditure for forensic investigations has grown to R127m.  But spokesperson Kutlwano Olifant defended this, saying corruption was public enemy number one and that there were 3,500 graft cases being investigated.

  • Read this report by Hlengiwe Nhlabathi in full at News24
  • Read too, DA, Mashaba reject report that Joburg is 'heading for bailout', at News24

Get other news reports at the SA Labour News home page