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Govt throws R3.5bn at SAA, but Stats SA can't get R200m to keep delivering?

19 February 2020 5:51 PM
Tags:
Stats SA
Statistics South Africa
SA Statistics Council
Dr Azar Jammine Econometrix
Dr Azar Jammine (Econometrix) and John Maytham weigh in on resignation threat by the Stats SA Council over funding restrictions.

Advisory body, the South African Statistics Council has threatened to withdraw its support for Stats SA and it appears that some in government are taking notice:

In Parliament today, the Portfolio Committee on Public Service and Administration said they want Finance Minister Tito Mboweni to appear to account for the growing lack of funding at Stats SA.

John Maytham, Afternoon Drive host

RELATED: Stats SA Council threatens to resign over lack of funding, frozen posts

Econometrix director and chief economist Dr Azar Jammine says Statistics South Africa is one of the few institutions referred to as a "bastion of stability" in the country.

Then why is its reputation quite possibly under threat simply because it needs an injection of R200-million from government and vacant posts are frozen?

Dr Jammine says losing the council members, who are professionals serving on a voluntary basis, is "a big danger".

They are doing it out of a service to community and they basically believe that their reputations are at stake if the statistics are found to be faulty.

Dr Azar Jammine, Director and chief economist - Econometrix

Comparing the handling of embattled state-owned enterprises (SOEs) putting South Africa's economy at risk, puts the issue in perspective:

I think you [John] put the figures together: The relationship between Stats SA wanting R200-million just to run operations efficiently and there we are throwing R3.5-billion to SAA and a much bigger amount to Eskom to get them to run more efficiently...

Dr Azar Jammine, Director and chief economist - Econometrix

Are we right in sacrificing an institution like Stats SA in the interests of throwing money at projects that are not necessarily going to bring us huge benefits?

Dr Azar Jammine, Director and chief economist - Econometrix

Listen to the important discussion on Afternoon Drive with John Maytham:

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19 February 2020 5:51 PM
Tags:
Stats SA
Statistics South Africa
SA Statistics Council
Dr Azar Jammine Econometrix

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