The Democratic Alliance (DA) welcomes the fact that the KwaZulu-Natal’s (KZN) Arts and Culture MEC, Hlengiwe Mavimbela, has finally woken up from her slumber and that she will distribute formerly hidden musical instruments to up and upcoming artists in the province later today.
The MEC’s move comes after the DA last week exposed the whereabouts of R15 million worth of musical instruments, which had been lying unused in storage facilities for the past nine years.
While the DA welcomes the distribution of the instruments, we regard the MEC’s conduct as astounding.
It is no coincidence that just days after the DA exposed where they were lying gathering dust, that the MEC will be distributing the very same musical instruments and sewing machines at the Winston Churchill Theatre in Pietermaritzburg today at 2pm.
This can only be regarded as a bid to divert attention from her Department’s deliberate concealment of these items. The fact that they are being distributed today is due to the DA having exposed their whereabouts and the Department’s blatant mismanagement.
The DA will continue to demand answers about the fact that these items were lying unused for years while they could have benefitted hundreds of artists in KZN. In particular, HOD Ntokozo Chonco must be held accountable for this embarrassing situation within the DoAC.
The DA is pleased that the DoAC is finally doing something to the benefit of upcoming artists. Certainly, it has not gone above and beyond to assist musicians and performers during the past 18 months of Covid-19 lockdown.
Today’s actions come very late in the day and the reality is that the MEC and her Department have largely been missing in action.
The DA in KZN will persist in ensuring that the DoAC fulfils its mandate to the people of our province.