Note to Editors: Find attached a soundbite from KZN DA Youth Chairperson, Nomfundo Khubone
The DA Youth in KwaZulu Natal has learnt, through the Premier of KwaZulu Natal Sihle Zikalala, that a mere 2% of young people who had applied for financial support from the Premier’s R71 million KZN youth business fund got assistance.
From a staggering 2246 applications from aspiring youth entrepreneurs, submitted to the office of the premier, only 55 beneficiaries were awarded.
While it is still unclear as to how the beneficiaries were identified or what process was followed, it is concerning that so many young people who had high hopes of getting some assistance from the government to kick start their small businesses, have seen their hopes shattered.
It is also blatantly clear that those who were mostly disregarded from the process are applicants from rural municipal districts. It is noteworthy to mention that there were only 2 beneficiaries from Amajuba district, 2 from Zululand and 3 from Harry Gwala to name a few. eThekwini municipality had 16 beneficiaries.
Earlier this year we marched to the office of the Premier to deliver a memorandum which stipulated that the Premier must ensure that the youth fund is not turned into rewards for members of the ANC Youth League and that the process be fair and transparent and companies awarded must be open for public scrutiny.
We have since requested from the office of the premier the list of all the beneficiaries so that we can satisfy ourselves that the companies identified are deserving and not necessarily linked to the ANCYL.
The DA youth will continue to fight for equal and fair opportunities for all young people in KwaZulu Natal. For far too long the governing party has been consistent in dishing out patronage to only those closely aligned to the organisation and government.