NYDA defends Youth Festival

2010-12-16 14:36

Johannesburg - The National Youth Development Agency (NYDA) on Thursday defended the 17th World Youth Festival from criticism and welcomed calls for an audit into the R69m event.

"We would welcome any audit into the organisation and management of the youth festival," NYDA chairperson Andile Lungisa said in a statement.

"The NYDA is a public entity and gets audited like any other public organisation," he said.

Lungisa said he was "disappointed" with the media's coverage, with reports of disorganisation and speakers not showing up. He lamented the fact that there was no reporting on "some" venues being full and on the "robust discussions" taking place.

The festival, currently underway at the Tshwane Events Centre, began on Monday and would end on December 21. According to the agency 15 000 youth from over 130 countries were attending the festival.

Widespread criticism

There had been widespread criticism of the festival's budget, which was initially R400m, but later cut to R69m. Of this, R29m came from government and R40m from the National Lotteries Board.

The festival's management was criticised when several speakers, including several government ministers, did not arrive, buses carrying delegates arrived late and there was a shortage of food.

According to some media reports delegates played "kissing games" while waiting for seminars to begin.

"We are disappointed with the media who find it easy to ignore the issues that are being discussed in the seminars... I find that there is more coverage about things that happen outside the seminar venues, even though sufficient progress is being made and resolutions are being taken on critical issues at the various seminars and conferences."

The agency was "doing our best" to cater for all delegates, and no session had been cancelled due to a lack of speakers.

"Some of the speakers mentioned in the programme will still come through... I want to emphasise that no sessions have been cancelled because there are no speakers... .The festival is going ahead as planned and focus should be on the content."

  • Bluddy Agent - 2010-12-16 14:52

    Shifting blame on the media for the festival's failure for simply reporting fact? He cannot even tell us what good has thus far been achieved!

      sganja - 2010-12-16 15:13

      Media will always report the negative things,i thought you knew that.Lets rally behind the festival as it will help us the youth,I will visit the seminar on the weekend,then I will share the good news.

      PoncyMalema - 2010-12-16 16:20 you agree with the amount of money being spent on this "festival"? or do you think it could be better spent helping those who are less fortunate than us?

      BlackSwan - 2010-12-16 17:26

      sganja PLEASE give me one way in which this well-organised event will help YOU - the youth

  • hb7of9 - 2010-12-16 14:55

    as per usual the content of the event will be of on consequence, following a similar route to governments infamous plans which never bear results

      Zanu - 2010-12-20 00:03

      69million should be spent on education... not a bloody party!! ANC has gone mad... where is this money from? ANC needs to invest in education and job creation. there is no place for party time while so many go hungry. ANC dont care for their own voters. makes me sick!

  • goyougoodthing - 2010-12-16 15:01

    The media reports suggest this is a shambles from start to finish. I tend to trust the media more than the government on this one.

      sganja - 2010-12-16 15:14

      Really?then you have cant always trust media,anyway I passed through the venue yesterday and saw delegates happy,which means they feel welcomed....I invite you to visit the venue.....

      goyougoodthing - 2010-12-16 15:21

      Who are you, show yourself. I don't trust the media but I trust the politicians less. Sorry, this whole idea and cost is disgusting. Is it possible to do something that is MEANINGFUL in SA or is it all about lining pockets with expense accounts.

      BlackSwan - 2010-12-16 17:27

      They are happy because they have a paid holiday you fool

  • Mike@CapeT - 2010-12-16 15:13

    How do you audit a snogging orgy?

  • CygnusX1 - 2010-12-16 15:16

    Andile, the fact that the NYDA is a public entity and as such is subject to public audits means diddly squat.(and you know it) The question is whether this "public audit" when completed will be made public, or might the publicising of the audit be a threat to national security?

  • Treborani - 2010-12-16 15:18

    Typical EISH balls-up.......

  • JH - 2010-12-16 15:20

    They want to ban the media yet bitch and moan when the media doesn't pitch up. Go figure

  • SuperCal - 2010-12-16 15:24

    how the hell does someone spend 69 million on a party....and that was cut from 400 many houses could that build???

      goyougoodthing - 2010-12-16 15:29

      A student party at that... must be one hell of a drinks bill.

      Varknek - 2010-12-16 16:04

      Easy. Invite a lot of communists and lazy South Africans and wala ...... err .... JZ we are about another 25 million short.

  • Johan Kruger - 2010-12-16 15:29

    Lottery money should be distributed into welfare orginisations, and not youth rallies or any of that kind. We all should boicott the lottery.

  • Julius - 2010-12-16 15:29

    Heh man!, Seen my new Ferrari

      Varknek - 2010-12-16 16:04

      Cool dude. Yer the MAN.

      Treborani - 2010-12-16 16:31

      That'll pull the meide...

      Treborani - 2010-12-16 16:37

      Yor gelfrent she dont feet in da new Ka

  • Johan Kruger - 2010-12-16 15:31

    Lottery money should be donated to welfare orginisations, and not youth rallies or of any kind. I will not contribute to the lottery fund in the future.

      Exunitate - 2010-12-16 15:50

      I agree Johan - no more lotteries for me or my family.

  • nick - 2010-12-16 15:35

    At the rate the complaints are going up about this thing we will all be told that we are jealous for not being invited, and that it actually cost R75 million. Surprised the esteemed Kenny Kunene was not invited.

  • Varknek - 2010-12-16 15:52

    @sganja Last time I checked I noticed that the youth will always feel welcome AND have smiles on their faces when they party.

  • Chloe - 2010-12-16 15:56

    Media? So the youth league actually hoped it would just go away softly and that no-one should've mentioned at all? Irrespective of the fact that millions of rands of public money was spent in this mess? There should be a national enquiry with a court case and everything that goes with it. Monies were spent inappropriately but it would seem that enquiries are only for the selected few "outsiders".

  • abezarco - 2010-12-16 16:30

    Sounds like the Mad Hatter's Tea Party although more sense was probably spoken at the tea party than at this farce.

  • Hendrik - 2010-12-16 16:36

    Bla, Bla, Bla!!

  • Bonzo - 2010-12-17 01:49

    Youth is wasted on the young. Chomp, slurp, smooch, and run in circles crying 'down with imperialism!'

  • awwgee - 2010-12-17 16:58

    Yes please - we would like an audit!!! It would be interesting to see what the money was spent on, as I understood that most delegates paid for themselves - except of course - I guess - those from the anc kindergarten!!!! Did the Tswane council charge for the venue? Did the university get paid for accommodation? - all anc controlled, so probably no charge, as the ratepayer or taxpayer can foot the bill!!! I look forward to the report on the audit - probably like most of the audits of the anc - qualified! huge amounts of money unaccounted or unauthorised - and then what is the point - is the kindergarten going to pay the money back to lotto or the government - no chance - thick as thieves with old std3!

  • Francois B - 2010-12-17 18:47

    With this money they could have built 280 RDP houses! Crazy!

      Zanu - 2010-12-20 00:06

      Or just one house for Malema in Sandton or Sandhurst

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