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By Bonginkosi Tiwane

Digital Journalist

Presidency: Ramaphosa advised KZN government against hosting the Samas

Vincent Magwenya said the decision was in keeping with the kind of fiscal discipline that needs to be seen across government.

Presidential spokesperson Vincent Magwenya has confirmed President Cyril Ramaphosa advised the KwaZulu-Natal government not to sponsor and host the South African Music Awards (Samas).

“MECs report to Premiers, secondly the President does not get involved in the day-to-day running of Provinces as well as Provincial Departments. However, there was a conversation between MEC Duma and the President on the matter, in which the President advised, which all he can do is to advise, against proceeding with sponsoring that event,” said Magwenya.

On Wednesday morning ANC provincial chairperson and economic development, tourism and environmental affairs MEC Siboniso Duma announced the decision to abandon its controversial R28 million plan to host the SAMAs ceremony in Durban next month.

“Having consulted widely with the executive council and other stakeholders, I have advised the department to stop the hosting of the South African Music Awards this year,” Duma said.

ALSO READ: ‘It’s not a superfluous party’, says Samas boss, amid rumours event has been canned

Fiscal discipline

The department management was meeting with the recording industry to inform them of the decision, which was also being communicated to the provincial cabinet, as the hosting of the SAMAs was “a collective decision”.

“Subsequent to that, the Provincial leadership and MEC Duma then took a decision which was announced yesterday…and that advice was obviously in keeping with the kind of fiscal discipline that needs to be seen across government and that the President is advocating as well,” said Magwenya.

Recording Industry of South Africa (RiSA) CEO Nhlanhla Sibisi said this week he was dismayed the awards were characterised as a conduit of looting. RiSA is the organiser of the Samas.

“The SAMA is not a superfluous party, any such assertion flies in the face of the contribution made by the SAMA to the Mzansi Golden Economy.”

Sibisi said the awards would benefit the creative sector and wider economy.

“Contrary to spurious allegations, our conversation with the City of eThekwini had been on infrastructure and logistics support and did not include any financial contribution,” the CEO said.

NOW READ: Mandoza to be honoured in death at the Samas

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Cyril Ramaphosa KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) samas

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