AfriForum launches #StopTheBus campaign against transportation of people to presidential inauguration at municipal expense

This year’s presidential inauguration will not only be the biggest and most expensive in South African history – the presidency has in addition announced that municipalities from each of the nine provinces must transport 2 000 people (altogether 18 000 people) to the Loftus Versfeld stadium at their own expense. In light of these events, AfriForum decided to launch the #StopTheBus campaign.

According to the treasury, the total debt of municipalities in South Africa already amounted to R138,2 billion by December 2017, while the 2019 budget review indicates that 113 of the 278 municipalities have unfunded budgets this year – which means that they don’t have enough money to cover their expenses for 2019. The budget review furthermore determines that every municipality is responsible for the prioritisation of their resources and cutting down on wasteful expenditure. AfriForum subsequently decided to encourage the signing of protest letters against the further wastage of municipal funds across the country that will be submitted at the various municipalities. The civil rights organisation will also send a protest letter to the presidency in this regard.

“According to calculations, the presidential inauguration will already cost the taxpayer approximately R120 million. This instruction from the presidency is ill-considered and clearly not in accordance with the instruction that municipalities need to reduce wasteful expenses. In light of the current economic state in South Africa, the extent of this presidential inauguration is ill-judged and a further wastage of money in the shrinking coffers of the state,” says Natasha Venter, Campaign Officer at AfriForum.    

Many municipalities, especially in rural towns, don’t even provide basic services to residents.

“Irregular or no water supply, the non-removal of waste and raw sewage running off in streets are only a few of the consequences that residents living in rural areas must face on a daily basis due to the failure of municipalities to perform their constitutional obligation. It is unfair and irresponsible of the presidency to additionally place this burden on municipalities,” says Morné Mostert, AfriForum’s Head of Local Government Affairs.     

Residents are encouraged to sign the petition to subsequently prevent municipalities from getting into debt even further. The petition is available online at


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