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The Finance minister has finally admitted, through his mid-year budget review report for the 2017/18 financial year that government is in serious financial trouble.

The minister reportedly also lamented the fact that as a country we continue to rely heavily on the SACU receipts to primarily finance our day to day operations as government. The financial challenges that government is facing are not an accident, the warning signs have been there for several years and experts have been warning that unless it changes its spending patterns, the country will eventually become bankrupt.

The current Finance minister is on his last year in office and he has over the past four years been singing one and the same song without any tangible changes to the spending patterns of government; he has dismally failed the people of Swaziland. As Finance minister, he has continued to pump in hundreds of millions of Emalangeni into white elephants much against all advice and common sense.

While the admission by the minister that the country is on the verge of insolvency is plausible, it is unfortunately not enough; the admission on its own will not address our problems. The minister needs to tell us what concrete plans he is putting in place to turn around our fortunes. As one philosopher put it; “Madness is doing one and the same thing and somehow hope for a different result.”

You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to determine that our resources are wasted on vanity projects that will have no impact on the lives of the population; that we continue spending a huge chunk of our resources on the recruitment of personnel who will add no value to the lives of the people; that we have the least growing economy in Sub-Saharan Africa; that we have the lowest attraction of FDI in Sub-Saharan Africa; that we are now regarded as the most unequal society in Africa and at this rate we will soon be the most unequal society in the world.

The legacy that the minister is leaving is a very horrible one where government hospitals have no drugs, where the elderly are not paid their grants even when they attain the stipulated age of 60 years, where while the nation is on the one hand praying for rains, it is also praying that the horrible roads are not made worse, the list is endless.

As a respected financial person, the minister has unfortunately tarnished his reputation as Finance minister, he could have been bullied into making political decisions to the detriment of our financial situation but we will never know that, all we know is that he has failed us and he should take full responsibility for our state of affairs, at this day and age a country cannot survive if it has very weak Finance ministers no matter how good they may be in the finance field. In politics you have to be firm and if the bullying gets unbearable, resign.


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