Trea­sury’s Sachs also calls it quits

Fears this will cause Bud­get cri­sis

Cape Argus - - NEWS - Siviwe Feketha

THE DA has ex­pressed fears that the res­ig­na­tion of Bud­get chief Michael Sachs will plunge the process into a cri­sis. DA spokesper­son for fi­nance David Maynier said Sachs’s de­par­ture might have been trig­gered by deep­en­ing chaos in the de­ci­sion-mak­ing on the Bud­get.

“The shock res­ig­na­tion of vet­eran Bud­get of­fice head Michael Sachs, which is a huge blow to Na­tional Trea­sury, con­firms our fears that de­ci­sion-mak­ing on Bud­get pri­or­i­ties, and the Bud­get it­self, have now been cen­tralised un­der Pres­i­dent Ja­cob Zuma,” Maynier said.

The depart­ment yes­ter­day con­firmed Sachs’s de­ci­sion to leave his post although the ac­tual rea­sons for his de­par­ture were still not clear.

Na­tional Trea­sury ex­pressed sad­ness at the res­ig­na­tion of Sachs.

Fi­nance Min­is­ter Malusi Gi­gaba hailed him for ex­cel­lent ser­vice and com­mit­ment to both the na­tional Bud­get as well as the depart­ment over the years.

“Both the di­rec­tor-gen­eral and I are aware of pro­tect­ing the in­tegrity and trans­parency of the Bud­get sys­tem and process, and en­sure that all tax and ex­pen­di­ture de­ci­sion pro­cesses con­tinue to be run by the Trea­sury and min­is­ter of fi­nance, and con­tin­ues with the con­sul­ta­tive process in­tro­duced by the first demo­cratic gov­ern­ment,” Gi­gaba said.

While Sachs will not leave the depart­ment im­me­di­ately as part of en­sur­ing a smooth han­dover, his de­ci­sion has been viewed as hav­ing a po­ten­tial to fur­ther weaken the Trea­sury.

It has re­it­er­ated that there were se­nior, ex­pe­ri­enced of­fi­cials who are ca­pa­ble.

“Mr Sachs works with many knowl­edge­able tech­nocrats who he has also helped groom over his years at the depart­ment,” a state­ment read.

Maynier said said Sachs’s res­ig­na­tion dur­ing the mid­dle of a fis­cal cri­sis would plunge the Bud­get process into a cri­sis. He said it could trig­ger the de­par­ture of other se­nior of­fi­cials who might also be frus­trated by how the depart­ment is be­ing run.

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