Story-ideas-1011172

Millions splurged by SA taxpayers on Palestine

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The writer’s 2011 exposé showed over R60m (at today’s exchange rate) of taxpayer money was splurged on supporting refugees in Gaza, on institution-building in the PA, and, since 1994, paying for the Palestinian ambassador, his residence and all associated costs. This forms part of the annual Dirco budget. Does this mean that if Hamas opens an office in SA, taxpayers will have to pay for that too? Is there really a need to have an embassy and an office for a single political party?
by ANT KATZ | Oct 26, 2015

Early in 2011 the then-Minister of International Relations and Co-operation (Dirco) was asked a formal questioirco spent subsidising foreign countries and how it was spent.

After some months, the answer was given, formally, and recorded in Hansard. It was several pages long and covered various countries. The lion's share of the pay-outs was, however, going to Palestine.

The writer, who was then publishing the now-defunct website MyShtetl, was alerted to this by a reader in Cape Town - and so began a several-month-long investigation which culminated in a comprehensive exposé which was published on October 11, 2011 – over four years ago.

ANC HAMAS - ex MyShtetl smallWhile the words and details are lost to us, although they will appear in Hansard. the Parliamentary records, the outcome all appears in the table.

The outcome of that story was that Dirco admitted to have been funding the Palestinian embassy, ambassador and all associated expenses since the inception of democracy in South Africa.

Dirco also provided the figures that they were paying from taxpayers' money towards the PA broken into financial years, National government’s financial years run from  April  1 to March 31 each year – as against municipal budgets that run from July to June.  

It is significant to note that, at the time of this report’s publication, the US%-ZAR rate was R7,79.

ANC HAMAS - ex MyShtetl

The outcome of the exposé in 2011. The information is all part of the Parliamentary record and is available on open source from Hansard


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