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Cosatu calls for scrapping of soccer club Tottenham Hotspur sponsorship proposal

President Cyril Ramaphosa.

Labour federation Cosatu has called on President Cyril Ramaphosa to scrap the sponsorship proposal by South African Tourism for English Premier League outfit Tottenham Hotspur. File Picture: Phando Jikelo African News Agency (ANA).

Published Feb 2, 2023


Durban – The Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) says President Cyril Ramaphosa must look at some of the bizarre ideas from government departments in recent times when reviewing whether to retain or dump ministers in his Cabinet.

The labour federation was reacting to reports of the R1 billion soccer sponsorship proposal by South African Tourism for English Premier League (EPL) outfit Tottenham Hotspur, which it labelled as an insult to struggling workers and taxpayers.

On Thursday, Cosatu called on the South African government to scrap the proposed R1 billion football sponsorship to the EPL team by SA Tourism.

Labour federation spokesperson Sizwe Pamla labelled the proposed deal as a misguided vanity project that would contribute nothing to fixing the ailing tourism industry.

“The federation is concerned by the number of wrong-headed and cartoonish ideas produced by government departments, and bizarrely even championed by their ministers, on how to fix this ailing sector of the economy.

“This comes after the Department of Arts, Culture and Sport proposed a ludicrous and absurd plan to blow about R22 million on a 100-metre flag monument,” said Pamla.

He warned that throwing money that the country did not have at any problem would sink South Africa deeper into the abyss.

Pamla noted that the South African government was becoming less able to meet its obligations through taxation and had resorted to dangerous levels of inflationary borrowing instead.

“Throwing borrowed money on these futile ideas while, at the same time, gutting state institutions through budget cuts is senseless. The same government that wants to sponsor a rich European soccer team has imposed a vicious wage freeze on nurses, doctors, teachers, police officers and other hard-working public servants since 2020,” Pamla added.

Cosatu called on the Presidency, Treasury and the Department of Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation to intervene to stop the wastage of taxpayers’ hard-earned money.

“The president would do well to take such nonsensical and offensive episodes into account when he reviews the performance of his ministers and applies his mind on the need for their continued stay in Cabinet,” Pamla concluded.