R40 million Boipatong Youth Monument stands empty

Kingsol Chabalala MPL

Spokesperson on Arts, Culture and Heritage

In a reply to DA questions on the R40 349 133 Boipatong Youth Monument, the Gauteng MEC of Sport, Arts, Culture and Heritage indicated that the site is still not complete.

A site visit to the location by the Democratic Alliance revealed numerous empty buildings with no sign of the promised youth centre or computer lab.

This is after the department promised to use the erection of this monument to uplift and develop the community.

In written replies to my questions, the MEC declined to go into detail regarding how the initial construction phase had benefitted the residents of Boipatong.

This monument, erected to honour an Apartheid youth uprising and subsequent massacre, cannot pay proper tribute to their sacrifice in such a state.

I will be writing follow up questions to the MEC to establish:

  1. How many people are expected to be employed at the monument upon completion
  2. When exactly the department expects the monument to open
  3. If the department still plans to install a community centre and computer lab and how exactly these will be used to benefit the community
  4. How exactly the construction phase of this project has benefitted the community

The proper way to honour those who gave their very lives for our freedom is to ensure that today’s generation has a better life.

The key to this is getting our youth working and into the economy. It is crucial that we use every opportunity, including the erection of this monument, to promote growth and development in our most vulnerable communities.