South Africa

Cogta spent R3.8 million on new cars for minister and deputies last year

Thembi Nkadimeng

The Ministry of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) has confirmed it spent more than R3.87-million last year on luxury cars for its top officials.

Responding to parliamentary questions recently, the department said it had spent R1.57 million on two BMW X3 xDrive 20d for Minister Thembisile Nkadimeng to use when in Pretoria and Cape Town.

Each vehicle was bought for R 786 295.01

READ MORE: Electrified oil-burning Toyota Fortuner pricing uncovered

According to BMW‘s website, the X3 xDrive 20d can retail for about R1.1 million each.

The car boasts mechanical roller sun blinds for rear side windows and the ability to open doors and the boot without using the vehicle key. 

Nkadimeng’s deputies also benefitted from new rides last year, with R788 795 being spent on Prince Burns-Ncamashea’s BMW X3 xDrive 20d and R786 295.01 on the same vehicle for Parks Tau.

Tau got a Toyota Fortuner 2.8 GD-6 just a month earlier, setting the department back by R 692 347.15. The vehicle was listed for his use while in Cape Town.

READ MORE: Cabinet blew R20 million on fuel and new luxury vehicles for ‘ANC petrolheads’, says DA

Toyota dealerships list the Fortuner 2.8 GD-6 as between R837 800 and R915 400.

The car has leather seats in black and maroon. The driver and front passenger seats are heated and electrically adjustable.

What does the handbook say?

The ministerial handbook gives cabinet ministers and deputy ministers vehicles to use in Pretoria and Cape Town. The cost of fuel, maintenance, tyres and tolls for all of these vehicles is paid by taxpayers.

R20m on cars?

In 2022, the Democratic Alliance (DA) claimed government had spent R20 million in public funds on fuel and luxury vehicles for ministers and deputy ministers between 2019 and that year.

It said it had got this figure through a series of parliamentary questions.

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“Since 2019, taxpayers bought 24 new vehicles for ministers and deputy ministers, at a total cost of almost R19 million. The average cost for the 24 vehicles purchased was R789 736 – well in excess of the limit supposedly established by the Ministerial Handbook.

“Ministers and former ministers, including Fikile Mbalula, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, Pravin Gordhan, Tito Mboweni, Maite Nkoane-Mashabane, Joe Phaahla, Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane and Khumbudzo Ntshavheni, all bought themselves flashy new wheels as poverty, hunger and hardship exploded all around them,” the party’s Leon Schreiber said.