Mbalula: No one will stop my party

2013-05-24 00:00

CAPE TOWN — “Who’s going to stop me holding a sports awards evening for tens of millions of rands? The Democratic Alliance? Huh!”

Sports Minister Fikele Mbalula told Parliament yesterday no one would stop his department holding the “razmatazz” event, for which R65 million has been budgeted.

“Keep an eye on the invitations. The Razmatazz is about to become Humdinger,” Mbalula joked in reference to his nickname, Razmatazz Mbalula.

“My department has budgeted R21 million for the evening and the rest is coming from the broadcast rights that the SABC and ­SuperSport have bought,” he said.

“Bring your party shoes, nicest suits and dresses and rock up at the door,” he told members of the sports and recreation portfolio committee while addressing them on his budget yesterday.

He said the DA was hypocritical about this type of spending. The Cape Town city council spent R10 million to bring Manchester United to the city and was now flirting with the PSL again to bring Liverpool to the the city.

Not a cent of that money was offered to local football clubs, he said.

In answer to a question from committee chairperson Richard Mdakane, Mbalula said transformation in sport was important.

“Every sport federation must transform and those that drag their feet will be forced,” he said.

But he added: “I want to make it very clear that by this I don’t mean I want to see an exclusively black Springbok team run on to the field.”

Transformation meant players of all races must get equal opportunities, and one must not be developed at the expense of others, he said.

Mbalula’s deputy, Gert Oosthuizen, warned in his turn that the days of the Bokkie week for junior players being exclusively for white schools were numbered.

“It cannot and must not be,” he said. The week was contrary to the department’s agenda, he said.

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