The DA objects to post-riot relief based on race

Issued by Dean Macpherson MP – DA Shadow Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition and DA KZN Chairperson
22 Jul 2022 in News

The DA notes that relief funds for businesses affected by the July riots that took place in Kwazulu-Natal last year have been distributed according to race-based criteria.

The National Empowerment Fund, an agency of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTIC) has approved over R1 billion for the recovery of affected SMMEs.

Of this, R650 million came from the Department of Trade Industry and Competition (DTIC) and R273 million came from the Solidarity Fund. See their statement here.

The NEF has stated that one of the requirements for firms to receive this funding was that they needed to be owned and managed by black entrepreneurs.

It is concerning that money donated to the Solidarity Fund by business and private citizens, for the benefit of all South Africans, is now being used to assist businesses in KZN based on racial criteria. The money donated to this fund was never intended to be distributed based on the race of the recipients, but instead was meant to assist all South Africans for emergency relief.

All business owners were affected by the looting and damage caused in KZN, irrespective of their race. It is unconscionable that relief funds provided to affected business owners is now reserved for particular racial groupings, as a destroyed business constitutes a harm to the owner and their employees irrespective of their race.

While the ANC continues to divide South Africans on the basis of race, the DA has adopted the principle of non-racialism and will continue to fight for all South Africans.

The DA will be submitting a PAIA request to the DTIC to determine exactly who has received funds provided by the DTIC and the Solidarity Fund, so as to conduct further investigations into how these funds are being used.