Meyiwa’s lavish funeral justified

2015-02-03 00:00

THE KwaZulu-Natal Office of the Premier has this week justified its R3 million splurge on slain Bafana Bafana captain Senzo Meyiwa’s funeral.

Weekend Witness, through a Promotion of Access to Information Act application, established that the KZN provincial government forked out R3 million for the lavish funeral held at eThekwini’s Moses Mabhida Stadium last year.

Weekend Witness reported that the funeral and memorial service were funded following the death of the Orlando Pirates goalkeeper, killed in a botched robbery in Vosloorus, outside Johannesburg in October last year.

Provincial governement head Thami Ngwenya said government had acted within the ambit of the law.

“Our government always acts responsibly in line with all prevailing laws in carrying out its responsibilities,” said Ngwenya.

Explaining government’s decision, Ngwenya said, “This decision was in recognition of the immense contribution the late Senzo Meyiwa had made in service to his country.”

Ngwenya said Meyiwa’s contribution and service to South Africa had advanced nation building and social cohesion.

“Our nation and provincial government of KwaZulu-Natal are grateful for his service to South Africa. His life and contribution inspired many. His death galvanised our nation and the broader sporting world, to condemn acts of crime engulfing our society,” he said.

He added that the “correctness of the government decision to declare his funeral official, was evinced by unity of our country on that sad day”.

“It was further evinced by numerous messages of support from around the world,” he said.

In November last year thousands of fans who flocked to the stadium bedecked with glossy banners were entertained with a moving tribute by South African gospel legend Rebecca Malope at the funeral that was also attended by the who’s who of the soccer fraternity.

Weekend Witness established that:

•The provincial government paid R3 094 105,42 for the funeral.

•R1,2 million catering contract was awarded to Solesa Productions, which once listed President Jacob Zuma’s cousin, Deebo Mzobe as a director.

• A company called Soundrite was paid R599 405 for infrastructure.

• Courtesy Marketing was paid R190 500 for banners.

• Sunsun Investments was paid R12 118,50 to provide lanyards.

• amanda.khoza@witness.co.za

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