The Gauteng Department of Sports, Arts, Culture and Recreation (SACR) consistently underspends on its budget and fails to deliver much needed sporting facilities in the townships, yet it continues to spend millions on the Gauteng Sports Awards annually.
This year the department has allocated R9,494,000,00 for the Gauteng Sports Awards.
This was revealed to me by the Gauteng SACR MEC, Mbali Hlophe in a written reply to my questions in the Gauteng Provincial Legislature.
The department must reprioritise its budget to ensure that the money is allocated to render services to our people instead of wasting money on entertainment, food and beverages.
The following has been spent on Gauteng Sports Awards in the previous financial years:
It is ridiculous in that the department has spent over R28 million in the last four financial years on this annual event while we still have libraries across the province that do not have access to the internet. Most of our libraries are using the municipality WIFI which is weak and unable to accommodate the influx of the residents who are in dire need of internet connectivity.
The department has not yet delivered combi courts to the residents as promised and some of the sporting stadiums are in a shameful state. The Gauteng Provincial Archives in Kagiso Extension 6 in Krugersdorp is also still under-utilized. This money could have been used for service delivery not only for a one-day event.
The DA supports the honouring of our athletes as it motivates them and inspires our youth to take part in sports. However, we do not agree with the fact that the people’s money is being used for this event, rather than building and maintaining much-needed facilities.
The DA is of the view that Gauteng Sports Awards can be held at any one of the many government venues available instead of paying for expensive hotels and wasting money on food and beverages.