THE Greater Kokstad Music (GKM) DJ festival, which was previously held in Kokstad, will take place in Port Shepstone for the first time this year. The event, set to run from November 16 to November 18, also has a new name – Greater Kokstad Music South Coast (GKM-SC) festival. Organisers of the event said the Greater Kokstad Municipality (GKM) refused to allow use of the Kokstad Oval Cricket Stadium as the venue this year. The cricket ground has been the venue for the last two festivals. Event founder and businessman Lundi Mtatambi criticised Kokstad Municipality for refusing to allow the festival to take place at this venue, saying the event has contributed considerably in growing the local economy. “After several engagements with the Kokstad Municipality, we were told not to use Kokstad Oval cricket ground and directed to use Riverview Stadium. We refused to use Riverview Stadium because of safety issues,” said Mtatambi. “Kokstad Municipality did not value the importance of the event, even though it was established to boost the Kokstad economy and promote local artists,” he added. Local artist DJ Native, who performed at the event for the first time last year, said he is unhappy about the event moving outside of Kokstad. He said his music career really took off after he performed at the previous event. Mtatambi said the festival has also added value to Kokstad B&Bs, shops and taxis, as many people come from around the country to attend. “I am very disappointed with the Kokstad Municipality, who showed us no support,” said Mtatambi. He thanked the people of Ugu District, who offered the Ugu Sports and Leisure Centre as a new venue for the event. He called for the people of the South Coast to attend, as many artists will be performing.In response, Greater Kokstad Municipality spokesperson Nthabeleng Matshoba confirmed that the municipality has denied use of the Kokstad Oval Cricket Stadium. Matshoba stated that the cost of repairing the pitch following the past two festivals was the deciding factor in their decision.“In the past two years, the municipality has not benefited from the GKM DJ festival and will lose nothing now that it has been moved to Port Shepstone,” she said.