702 apologises after Walk The Talk event ‘mess’

702's Clement Manyathela takes a picture with a participant at the Walk The Talk event. Picture: 702

702's Clement Manyathela takes a picture with a participant at the Walk The Talk event. Picture: 702

Published Aug 21, 2023


Talk Radio 702 has issued an unreserved apology after it's 702 Walk The Talk event was marred by poor planning, leading to thousands being stuck in traffic for hours.

Participants have also complained of the dusty conditions they were faced with at the venue.

Over 27,000 Joburg residents attended the 702 Walk The Talk event at the Cradle of Humankind at Maropeng, but getting to the event was a nightmare due to gridlocked traffic at the venue.

It was the first 702 Walk The Talk event since the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Whilst stuck here, for the past three hours, in Park & Ride buses and many poor car drivers,” one user wrote.

“How badly planned, this new venue idea was NOT well thought through. Emmarentia remains boss. Thousands missing out on all the races now. What's the plan, 702 planners, for this mess?”

“If you booked and missed this, you missed nothing. How disorganised of 702FM, 1st the location is quoted as Cradle of Humankind in the website, you get there and they turn you away coz you must navigate Maropeng, another 40 minute drive dust, traffic, day wasted,” said one tweet.

“702 walk the talk poor organisation no traffic officials to control the traffic. cars driving all over the place bicycle lanes disrupted,” said another.

“Don’t waste your time, traffic is an absolute nightmare. Now everyone is driving on oncoming traffic, 702 can do better at organising this,” said another user.

“Yooh! the traffic was horrible, the dust was too much and having to walk about 2,5KM to the venue to start our walk?

“They definitely need better planning for the next event but otherwise I enjoyed the walk and the atmosphere was amazing”.

“The narrative around hosting the #702WTT at the Cradle of Humankind was good but the actual experience was terrible. The event was oversubscribed. Traffic movement was not well coordinated. Our walk started way too late”.

The event organisers offered a park and ride service, but those who opted for the service were stuck in traffic for several hours.

Those who drove struggled for parking at the venue and some have complained about poor traffic management at the venue.

Mzoxolo Jojwana, 702 station manager, said they were sorry for the mishap and they would improve.

“I want to make an unreserved apology to everyone who had to walk an extra four kilometres to get to the venue,” said Jojwana in a radio interview with 702 host Bongani Bingwa.

Jojwana said they were accepting criticism from the members of the public and they would be taking lessons on board.

He also said they had grossly underestimated the number of people who would attend the event.

And indeed, a promotional article about the event on the 702 website said “hundreds are expected to walk for a good cause”.

“We accept the feedback from the walkers, these are the lessons we will take on board for 2024,” said Jojwana.

Despite the poor planning, it was a record turnout for the event and there were also performances from household names including Simmy and Sun El Musician.