‘So what if there was a typo,’ says Mac Maharaj after banner faux pas

2014-12-24 00:00

AN awkward typo on a glossy banner at a presidential event in Durban has some government officials ­lashing out at “grammar Nazis”.

Some officials responded to the ­embarrassing error with laughter, while a spokesperson in the presidency chided those who questioned it.

A 800-by-200-cm wall banner reading “Living no one behind” was erected on a stage at an event President Jacob Zuma attended yesterday in Durban.

Zuma spent the day at a Christmas party for destitute families and senior ­citizens in Savannah Park, where he handed out gifts.

A source, who was at the event, said one could not miss the glaring grammatical error that was on a stage facing the audience.

After much finger pointing, the ­KwaZulu-Natal office of the Premier admitted that the grammatical error occurred in their graphics department.

The Office of the Presidency distanced itself from the banner.

Deputy director of communications Professor Ndawonde laughed and said, “I didn’t notice it. Why are you even making a big deal out of it? We are not responsible for banners.”

In a cheeky response, Zuma’s spokesperson Mac Maharaj said, “The event was organised by the community with whatever meagre resources and capacity they had. It would be wonderful if The Witness could sponsor banners at next year’s event to promote community development.”

Maharaj said, “So what if there was a typo? I don’t understand what is wrong.”

Initially head of provincial government communications Thami Ngwenya said the Office of the Premier was not involved in the event.

“Our banners have small writing at the bottom right hand corner with KZN Government Communications 2014 written on it,” said Ngwenya.

After investigating, Ngwenya admitted the banner was created by their office on September 30.

“The graphic designer said he designed the banner from the information he was given. Later that day, he sent it to his managers for approval and he got the go ahead.

“His managers did not see the error, there was clearly an oversight,” said Ngwenya.

He said the office would be taking ­action against those responsible for the error.

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