President Jacob Zuma’s bloated Cabinet has come under fire by opposition parties and business leaders, who demand that the “fat be cut” in order to save South Africa billions annually.
Zuma recently met with South African business leaders, to search for ways to kick start a process of economic growth and avoid a ratings downgrade to junk status.
Among the suggestions was a question on the size of Cabinet, with a recommendation that it be downsized to reduce excessive spending.
Reports however, suggest that the president was non-committal to any such move.
The Democratic Alliance believes that the country could function effectively with only 15 ministries, after party leader Mmusi Maimane detailed the party’s vision to streamline national government, thereby saving R4.6 billion annually.
The president has also acknowledged the impact of his Cabinet on spending – albeit in a roundabout way.
During his state of the nation address earlier this month, Zuma said that South Africa should only have one capital city, because having two cities doubled the costs of ministers to perform their duties – with the need for cars and houses on opposite sides of the country.

The bloated Cabinet

South Africa’s Cabinet comprises 35 ministers, 38 deputy ministers and the president and deputy president.
According to Africa Check, the salaries for these individuals sets the country back a minimum of R150 million a year – excluding all the benefits afforded to them courtesy of the ministerial handbook.
Each one of the 70 ministers and deputies are paid an annual salary of just over R2.2 million, while the president and his deputy are paid R2.6 million each.
When taking into account that each minister is provided with an allowance to purchase a private vehicle at 25% of their salary (totalling a further R36 million), two official vehicles (for use in Pretoria and in Cape Town), as well as a state house in a capital of their choice – the total bill increases significantly.
PortfolioMinisterDeputy Minister
President of South AfricaJacob Zuma
Deputy PresidentCyril Ramaphosa
Minister of Women in the PresidencySusan Shabangu
Minister in the PresidencyJeff RadebeButi Manamela
Agriculture, Forestry and FisheriesSenzeni ZokwanaBheki Cele
Arts and CultureNathi MthethwaRejoice Mabudafhasi
Basic EducationAngie MotshekgaEnver Surty
CommunicationsFaith MuthambiStella Ndabeni-Abrahams
Corporate Governance and Traditional AffairsDavid van RooyenAndries Nel
Obed Bapela
Defence and Military VeteransNosiviwe Mapisa-NqakulaKebby Maphatsoe
Economic DevelopmentEbrahim PatelMadala Masuku
EnergyTina Joemat-PetterssonThembi Majola
Environmental AffairsEdna MolewaBarbara Thomson
FinancePravin GordhanMcebisi Jonas
HealthAaron MotsoalediJoe Phaahla
Higher Education and TrainingBlade NzimandeMduduzi Manana
Home AffairsMalusi GigabaFatima Chohan
Human SettlementsLindiwe SisuluZoe Kota-Hendricks
International Relations and CooperationMaite Nkoana-MashabaneNoma-India Mfeketho
Lluwelyn Landers
Justice and Correctional ServicesMichael MasuthaJohn Jeffery
Thabang Makwetla
LabourMildred OliphantInkosi Patekile Holomisa
Mineral ResourcesNgoako RamatlhodiGodfrey Oliphant
PoliceNkosinathi NhlekoMaggie Sotyu
Public EnterprisesLynne BrownGratitude Magwanishe
Public Services and AdministrationNgoako Ramatlhodi,Ayanda Dlodlo
Public WorksThulas NxesiJeremy Cronin
Rural Development and Land ReformGugile NkwintiMcebisi Skwatsha
Candith Mashego-Dlamini
Science and TechnologyNaledi PandorZanele kaMagwaza-Msibi
Small Business DevelopmentLindiwe ZuluElizabeth Thabethe
Social DevelopmentBathabile DlaminiHenrietta Bogopane-Zulu
Sport and RecreationFikile MbalulaGert Oosthuizen
State SecurityDavid MahloboEllen Molekane
Telecommunications and Postal ServicesSiyabonga CweleHlengiwe Mkhize
TourismDerek HanekomThokozile Xasa
Trade and IndustryRob DaviesMzwandile Masina
TransportDipuo PetersSindiswe Chikunga
Water and SanitationNomvula MokonyanePam Tshwete
In 2014, the Sunday Times calculated that Cabinet’s total bill – including perks, private security, support staff, flights and spousal support – amounted to R1.6 billion a year (R1.1 billion minimum) and well over R5.6 billion over 5 years.
This averages R12.8 million per minister, R9.6 million per deputy minister – and as much as R312 million for the president.
Source : businesstech