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DA: Zwakele Mncwango says Essence Festival used as a tool to campaign for NDZ

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DA: Zwakele Mncwango says Essence Festival used as a tool to campaign for NDZ

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ANC Presidential hopeful Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma

28th September 2017

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The Democratic Alliance is disturbed by the ANC in eThekwini as it continues to use public funds to gain support for the ANC candidates for the upcoming ANC elective congress.

Today at the Essence event at ICC, the eThekwini Mayor, Zandile Gumede, was seen chanting praises and songs of her preferred ANC candidate, Doctor Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma (NDZ).

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It is clear that the R79 million festival, that is supposedly aimed at improving economic development, is instead being used as a tool to increase support for the ANC candidate. In June this year, the Social Cohesion Conference was cancelled at the last minute to accommodate NDZ, who was pushed to be the main speaker. The city wasted R2.1 million of public funds on cancelling the conference, funds that could have been used to improve the lives of the community.

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The DA believes that the Essence Festival is a wasteful and fruitless expenditure by the ANC, to enrich the ANC and the selected few cronies around Mama Zandile Gumede. This year it is also being used for factionalism and campaigning for the ANC.

Since 2015, the city has spent an estimated R175 million on the Essence Festival. When questions are asked about the return on this investment, the ANC in eThekwini is unable to give statistics on how many permanent jobs had been generated or evidence of how local businesses have benefitted from this huge investment by the city.

The DA will continue to defend the ratepayers of the city and push for the Essence Festival funding to be redirected to poverty alleviation, the creation of permanent jobs and increased infrastructure investment.

 

Issued by DA

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