Spend Wisely campaign launched

2018-12-19 06:01
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KWAZULU-NATAL MEC for Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs (Edtea) Sihle Zikalala officially launched the Spend Wisely Campaign in Mandeni last week, sending a strong warning against reckless spending during this festive period.

Zikalala’s message was taken both to members of the community and hundreds of workers in the Isithebe Industrial Park, a facility owned by Edtea’s entity Ithala Development Finance Corporation. Zikalala also used the opportunity to tour the factories in Isithebe Industrial Park, to engage operators who were facing challenges that saw production being halted recently, leading to fears of closure.

He first toured Metso, a foundry firm that employs 220 people. The firm has seen a number of disruptions recently, including an incident which saw production stopped due to a power station allegedly being petrol-bombed.

The MEC assured the operators of his department’s and government’s decisive intervention to bring back normality and safety.

He also briefly addressed a group of business owners and operators, who brought a number of operational and regulatory challenges to his attention, to “ensure and build business confidence among business leaders and operators based in the industrial park.”

Addressing more than a thousand people who gathered at the Emakhempini Sports Ground, Zikalala said: “Today we are launching a province-wide campaign to caution our citizens against reckless spending during the festive season. Reckless spending leads to a heavy burden of financial debt,” adding that reckless spending affects especially those who are already vulnerable and struggling.

“We are mandated to advise you to take sound financial decisions and to encourage you to stand up to protect your rights as consumers. Your protection is key to business sustainability. It is you who keep the wheels of the economy running. Without happy consumers, businesses cannot thrive or grow,” he said.

The MEC urged the community to stand against false, reckless, disinformation campaigns that tend to abuse the trust between customers and sellers, saying: “Those running businesses are not doing you, themselves, or anyone a favour if they disrespect or exploit customers.”

To end off, the MEC touched on stokvels, saying: “We know that 11.5 million men and women participate in SA’s 80 000 stokvels, saving no less than a whopping R49 billion a year.”

Addressing more than a thousand people who gathered at the Emakhempini Sports Ground on the periphery of Isithebe Industrial Park, Zikalala said: “Today we are launching a province-wide campaign to caution our citizens against reckless spending during the festive season. Reckless spending leads to a heavy burden of financial debt.”

He said reckless spending affects people’s lives adversely, especially those who are already vulnerable and struggling. Zikalala said his department was entrusted and empowered by the Consumer Protection Act to inform the public about their rights as customers and to help avoid their exploitation.

“We are mandated to advise you to take sound financial decisions and to encourage you to stand up to protect your rights as consumers. Your protection is key to business sustainability. It is you who keep the wheels of the economy running. Without happy consumers, businesses cannot thrive or grow,” he said.

The MEC urged the community and workers to stand against false, reckless, disinformation campaigns that tend to abuse the trust between customers and sellers.

“Those running businesses are not doing you, themselves, or anyone a favour if they disrespect or exploit customers,” he said.

MEC Zikalala said stokvels are a powerful saving tool which could do much more than simply payout during the festive season.

“We know that 11.5 million men and women participate in South Africa’s 80 000 stokvels, saving no less than a whopping R49 billion a year,” he said.

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