AfriForum and Solidarity welcome the decision of the Minister of Tourism, Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane, to suspend the Tourism Equity Fund’s (TEF) activities until discussions have taken place with AfriForum and Solidarity. This follows after the two institutions sent an urgent letter to the Minister about the fund, which intends to only offer financing to black-owned tourism businesses.
In the Minister’s reply to AfriForum and Solidarity, she announced that she wishes to enter into a discussion with these two organisations. Furthermore, she announced that the fund would be suspended for the duration of discussions with AfriForum and Solidarity. Solidarity welcomes this reaction by the Minister.
“Government has introduced lockdown measures due to COVID-19 and with it, limited trade and the larger economy. This resulted in thousands of businesses, especially in the tourism industry, not being able to generate any income for months on end. What government needs to do now, is reach out a hand to these businesses and support them, rather than abusing this opportunity to promote their racial ideology. We welcome the opportunity to enter into a discussion with the Minister regarding this matter,” says Morné Malan, Head of Communications at Solidarity.
“We welcome the Minister’s willingness to meet with us, and we believe this is a step in the right direction. The government has a responsibility towards all citizens since everyone in the tourism industry is currently in urgent need of help. The government cannot use a pandemic as an excuse to promote transformation while all South Africans are suffering,” says Monique Taute, Head of Campaigns at AfriForum.