By Safiyia Stanfley, MPL, DA Provincial Spokesperson on Sport, Arts and Culture:
The Democratic Alliance notes comments made by the Department of Sport, Arts and Culture (DSAC) about our concerns on the refurbishments of the Northern Cape Theatre.
It is completely untrue that we want to see this project fail. On contrary, our hope is for a successful completion of refurbishments and renovations at the theatre.
The DA wants to see taxpayers money spent on the project yielding positive results and the state getting value for money.
To date, already R28 million has been spent on refurbishments and renovations at the theatre over the past six years.
This is despite additional resources being needed to install lighting and sound equipment which is estimated to cost R6 million.
Are we looking at yet another “white elephant” project like the New Mental Hospital that has been dragging for ten years costing the taxpayer over R2 billion.
If the department has nothing to hide based on the DA’s apprehensions, let them come and open-up about the project.
The DA has raised concerns with DSAC MEC Lebogang Motlhaping regarding the theatre and we awaiting response from the legislature portfolio committee chairperson Maruping Lekwene on our request for an urgent oversight visit.
We will not be deterred by officials in executing our constitutional mandate of holding the government accountable. In fact, if the oversight does not take place as requested, the DA will conduct its own.
The department must come clean and account for the work already done at the theatre and disclose how money was spent.