Leaders left high and dry at ANC bash

2012-01-11 10:16

kalahari.com

Bloemfontein - Several African heads of state are apparently deeply upset after they were left without food and bedding at the accommodation provided to them for the ANC's centenary celebrations.

The heads of state allegedly had to buy their own bedding, food, pots, pans, glasses and bottled water because the ANC had ordered the owners of the houses it rented at Woodlands Hills Wildlife Estate to remove all their possessions. There was apparently only liquor provided.

The hotel group contracted to equip the houses, which had been rented for up to R50 000 per day, allegedly did not do its job properly.

Had to buy necessities

Security guards for President Yuweri Museveni from Uganda had to buy him some grilled chicken from Nando’s.

“Ugandan officials had to leave Woodlands to go and buy duvets, food and other necessities for the president as there was a bed without linen,” said Mampho Mmelaedi, who looked after the house Museveni was staying in.

At least 15 women who were hired as housekeepers, waitresses and cleaners in the estate, came forward to speak about their dissatisfaction over how foreign dignitaries were treated.

Presidents who were treated badly included Bingu wa Mutharika from Malawi, Obiang Mbasogo from Equatorial Guinea, Hifikepunye Pohamba from Namibia and Paul Kagame from Rwanda.

Valentine Rantsoareng, joint owner of the Rantsoareng hotel group, confirmed they were contracted for the job by the department of international relations.

He strongly denied allegations about the accommodation, adding that some of the heads of state had deviated from the menu and “rather asked for chicken”.

He said the staff members were hired by Design HR.

“I think people who make these allegations are somewhat dissatisfied because they haven’t been paid yet, but I have only now received the receipt for it,” he said.

Embarrassed


The women had another version of events, however.

“Namibian officials went to buy food, pots, plates and glasses to cook for the president [Pohamba]. I could see he was angry and disappointed,” said Motladi Metsing.

Kenalemang Pula said the Nigerian delegation arrived on Sunday morning and had packed their bags by lunchtime.

President Thomas Boni of Benin apparently immediately “stormed out" of Woodlands Hills.

One of the women said: “They kept asking us if we worked for the ANC or for the South African government. Understandably, they kept shouting at us. We were embarrassed to be there.”

When reached for comment, Museveni’s press secretary Tamale Mirundi, who was not part of the delegation, was trying to confirm the claims. However, Mirundi emphasised that if the reports were true the Ugandans would not have complained, because they saw themselves as fellow Africans, not visitors needing special treatment.

No official complaints


Free State ANC spokesperson William Bulwane said the party had been alerted to the claims. "Although we have not yet received any official complaints from heads of state we are going to be following this up with the estate."

ANC spokesperson Jackson Mthembu said he was unaware of any complaints, but said there had been “very, very serious problems" with accreditation for international dignitaries, spiritual leaders and the media.

President Jacob Zuma would apologise in person to heads of state and the department of international relations and co-operation would apologise to other international dignitaries, he said.

"We are not aware of any instances where heads of state had to go out of their way to secure linen or pots for private use. This was an event arranged by government and government made sure that all was in order.

"However, there were some instances where private houses who opened their doors to guests of the ANC did not adhere to the contract signed with the ANC. In these instances we dealt with these matters."

Everything would have come past me so I would have known if any complaints have been made.”

International relations spokesperson Clayson Monyela was also in the dark.

- Additional reporting by The Witness.

Read more on:    anc  |  hifikepunye pohamba  |  bingu wa mutharika  |  paul kagame  |  bloemfontein  |  anc centenary
NEXT ON NEWS24X

SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
394 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/News
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Tuesday Mitchells Plain - 19:35 PM
    Road name: M7 Vanguard Drive
    ROADWORKS - traffic restrictions between the R300 and Highlands Drive - expect delays
  • Tuesday Belhar - 17:58 PM
    Road name: Belhar Drive
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Alabama Drive
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Up to 60% off - clearance sale!

Save up to 60% on appliances, books, electronics, toys, movies and more. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Deal of the Week!

Get bestselling John Green novels now just R99 each! Hurry and get yours while stocks last. Shop here.

Mind blowing deals on beauty & fragrances

Save up to 30% off beauty and fragrances. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 50% off hair care products!

Save up to 50% on professional hair care products at kalahari.com. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

30% off academic books

Score a mind blowing 30% off academic books! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

BlackBerry Curve 9380

The first BlackBerry Curve smartphone with a touch screen Stay connected...

From R1799.00

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Something may come up to alert you of your security needs. It may be that you need to create a better structure for your finances...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.