Civil rights organisation AfriForum on Thursday expressed dissatisfaction with the Presidency’s request that municipalities countrywide must transport 18 000 people to the presidential inauguration in Pretoria on May 25, 2019.
Greater Pretoria AfriForum coordinator Lambert de Klerk stated that AfriForum submitted numerous protest letters from residents across the country to the National Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs in Pretoria. The civil rights organisation also sent a protest letter to the Presidency regarding the issue.
In a statement on the state of readiness for the Presidential inauguration in Tshwane Minister in the Presidency Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma reported that 4 500 guests have been invited from various sectors of society, including Parliamentarians, the Judiciary, Ministers and Deputy Ministers, Premiers, MECs and Executive Mayors. “We have also invited members of the diplomatic corps, religious sector, etc.”
Dlamini-Zuma stated that close to 32 000 people were expected to come to the stadium. Twenty-two thousand of those will be bussed from Gauteng and neighbouring Limpopo, Mpumalanga, North West, Free State provinces and 10 000 of these will be the walk-ins. The total capacity of the stadium is 37 000.
However, De Klerk explained that municipalities were already struggling to make the grade and could not even provide basic services to residents owing to a lack of funds, noting that tax payers were burdened with irregular or no water supply, the non-removal of waste and raw sewage running in the streets owing to the failure of municipalities to perform their constitutional obligations.
“Despite municipalities’ constitutional duty to provide basic services to citizens, there is a lack of service delivery in some rural towns and even in cities. He states that South Africa’s current economic state did not justify the enormous cost associated with the presidential inauguration and the economy would benefit from municipalities that avoided unnecessary expenses.
“AfriForum feels that the Presidency’s request is unfounded – that is why we are saying ‘stop the bus’ with the wasteful expenditure of municipal funds,” concluded De Klerk.