The DA’s Gauteng shadow MEC for Sports, Recreation, Arts and Culture, Kingsol Chabalala says only ¹⁄₆th of Sharpeville Human Rights Day funds were spent on local Emfuleni contractors.
Chabalala revealed this in a media statement saying despite numerous promises by the ANC-led Gauteng Provincial Government to increase its spend on local contractors for the procurement of goods and services, only R1.2million – or ¹⁄₆th of the R6.2 million spent on the Sharpeville Human Rights Day celebrations made its way to local Emfuleni contractors.
Chabalala said this was revealed in a written reply to the DA by Gauteng Premier David Makhura. Since taking office in 2014, the Premier has stressed the fact that the Provincial Government will be spending more of its budget on local contractors in an effort to grow township economies.
However, in many instances – such as the Human Rights Day celebrations in Sharpeville, the ANC-led Provincial Government is not living up to the mandate that it has set for itself.
Gauteng Infrastructure MEC, Jacob Mamabolo has gone on the record stating that the reason that this spend is hard to achieve is that the skills and goods that the Provincial Government requires are not readily available in the townships.
However, Chabalala says the MEC needs to be more specific as there are many skills available in the townships that could have been utilised in these events.
Despite this, little has been done to incubate small businesses and upskill residents in townships like Emfuleni, which is one of the provinces oldest and most neglected areas, to ensure that these goods and services can become available in the future. The government should hang its head in shame.
If the provincial government was serious about increasing its procurement spend from townships it would invest in creating an environment conducive for it to do business in. – Loxion Reporter