The Minister of Presidential Affairs and Public Administration, Lesego Motsumi, last week acknowledged that government is battling to reduce the millions of tax payers’ money that they use to maintain the offices of former Presidents Ketumile Masire and Festus Mogae.
The former presidents’ offices, whose core staff includes among others a Senior Private Secretary and an Executive Secretary, are maintained at the taxpayers’ expense. In the 2009/2010 financial year, Masire’s office gobbled up P3, 105,340, while Mogae cost government a whooping P4, 197,110.
Government is trying to cut down on the cost escalations, and Motsumi has proposed P2, 682,430 for Masire and P3, 670,420 for Mogae.
The opposition has called for these transactions to be scrutinized to check if the money is used prudently.
Apart from these expenses, the retired presidents are also built retirement homes at the taxpayers’ expense.
Mogae’s P20 million retirement mansion is located in Phakalane.
About P36, 142 was used to demolish a ministerial house at which a retirement home was later built for Masire at a cost of P7, 963,915.44. The plot on which Mogae’s home was built was bought for close to P2 million.