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Mpumalanga taxpayers shell out R17 million for financial consultant

While the land earmarked for the planned cultural hub in White River remains barren, the Department of Sport and Culture in Mpumalanga has already paid more than R17 million to the project’s financial consultant.

The consultant’s role, which was appointed in December 2021, is to conduct a viability study and find private investors for the project.

The cultural hub – which had already cost taxpayers more than R172 869 000 in 2021 – has an estimated budget of R5 billion. But to meet the budgetary target, the Department first needs to find investors.

This past weekend, the FF Plus visited the site of the planned project and found nothing but an empty plot of land overgrown with weeds.

In fact, the site looks even worse than with the party’s previous oversight visit in 2022.

According to replies to questions posed to the MEC, Ms Busisiwe Shongwe, the project was still awaiting approval by the National Treasury after it was announced in 2011 by the former MEC and previous Premier David Mabuza.

For this to happen, a special advisor had to be appointed first. After the appointment in 2021, and after hundreds of millions of rand had already been spent, the project was finally approved.

The Department is clearly building castles in the air that have cost taxpayers dearly without bearing any fruit.

This is yet another example of the ANC’s inability to govern and its ignorance concerning the people of the province’s actual needs.

Mpumalanga deserves better than the ANC.

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