NEW Nelson Mandela Bay Metro Mayor Athol Trollip has banned all business and first-class domestic air travel for municipal officials and public representatives.
“Under previous administrations, an excessive amount of money was spent on luxurious travel instead of on service delivery. Those days are over,” Trollip said on Sunday.
The move comes amid calls for tighter controls on expenditure in government departments and municipalities.
Trollip’s announcement also comes after Solly Msimanga, another newly elected DA, mayor took similar action in Tshwane.
Msimanga placed a moratorium on international travel for city officials and politicians and also put an immediate stop to inaugural parties and celebratory dinners that only benefit politicians.
Earlier this year, the Treasury announced new and far-reaching measures to contain costs at municipal level including cutting down on the use of consultants, travel and subsistence costs, the issuing of credit cards and accommodation costs.
Trollip said on occasion, it is necessary for officials and public representatives to travel in order to learn best practice for service delivery from other municipalities.
“From now on, this travel will be in economy class. Furthermore, travel arrangements will be co-ordinated well in advance so as to secure the lowest possible fares. This will be negotiated with our current service providers,” he said.
“This government has made a promise to endeavour to secure R100m in savings in our first 100 days, so that this can be redirected towards improving service delivery and growing the economy to create jobs. We are well on our way to achieving this,” said Trollip.
The DA gained control of Nelson Mandela Bay after entering into coalition agreements with other smaller parties. The outcome of the August 3 election saw the DA getting close to 47% of the vote in the metro, followed by the ANC with 41% and the EFF with just more than 5%.