15 December 2017 - NW4024
Stubbe, Mr DJ to ask the Minister of Energy
(1)(a) What was the purpose of the R2,1 million that was paid as a once-off gratuity to the former Minister of Energy shown on page 182 of the 2017 adjusted estimates of national expenditure of Vote No 26: Energy, (b) why was it paid and (c) What are the details of the gratuity; (2) (a) Why is there a shift of R17 million on the same page from the National Solar Water Heater Project to personnel remuneration, travel, gratuity, events and relocation costs, (b) what are the implications of this shift in funds for the project and (c) what are the current targets and achievements for this project for the current year?
1. (a) The purpose of the R2.1 million is a once off gratuity paid in accordance with Proclamation by the President of the Republic of South Africa No. 50, 2008. It is in line with paragraph 3.3 once off gratuity for Members of Executive or Deputy Ministers who have served more than 5 years and whose term of office has ended.
(b) The former Minister had served more than 5 years and her term of office had ended from 31st March 2017.
(c) The details of the gratuity are as follows:
i) 4 months pensionable salary for every 5 years term amounting to R 1,847,408.96
ii) Pro-rata part of the 5 year period (last term) 1 May 2014 – 31 March 2017 amounting to R 269,413.81
(2) (a) There was a shift of R17 million from the National Solar Water Heater Project to personnel remuneration, travel, gratuity, events and relocation costs because of the savings under SWHP that could be utilised to defray excess expenditure in those items. The shift was done in line with Section 43(1) of the Public Finance Management Act, Act 1 of 1999.
(2) (b) The shift of R17 million has had a minimal impact on the project. The budget was largely allocated for installation of solar water heaters for the financial year 2017/18 which had not commenced by end of September 2017, as the department is currently busy with compliance requirements of governance. For the remaining months of the current financial year the achievable number of installations will not be impacted upon by the shift of funds.
(2) (c) The current targets for this project for the current year, is to increase the number of procured baseline systems in line with the budget allocation and train youth on the installation of solar water heaters at targeted municipalities. In terms of the achievement, the Department increased the number of procured baseline systems from 42 196 in 2016/17 to 87 206 in 2017/18.