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City to provide R6,1 million for Minstrels

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The Cape minstrel fraternity has been given a financial boost by the City of Cape Town through R6,1 million in funding to the minstrel events and Malay choirs this year. On Monday, the City said it would support six associations to host events, including Tweede Nuwe Jaar, other minstrel tournaments, and the Malay choir competitions.

The City will transfer R4,1 million in cash to the associations and provide R2 million in support services. City-owned venues will be made available at no cost to the associations.

“The City’s support to these events is in line with our commitment to building an inclusive city by supporting events which bring people together. Each year the events resonate with families and communities across Cape Town as thousands of people, including tourists, fill the streets to watch the colourful and entertaining marches,” said the Mayors spokesperson, Zara Nicholson in a statement.

“The City’s support will also allow communities to showcase our rich cultural diversity, while creating employment opportunities in the garment-making, events, catering and transport industries.”
She explained that all requests for the funding were received through the City of Cape Town’s event support application system and were considered by the Special Events Committee (SpevCo) within their delegations or recommendations for support to Council.

The City took into account the Constitution, the Municipal Finance Management Act, the Prevention of Organised Crime Act, the City’s Credit Control and Debt Collection Policy, and other considerations when they reviewed the applications.

After deliberations at the SpevCo meeting, the City proposed financial support to each association as follows:

But from the above list, it appears the Cape Town Minstrel Carnival Association (CTMCA) was not given any allocation for funding.  For the past few years, the minstrels events have been dogged by infighting and politicking, both internally and with the City of Cape Town. Last year, the Cape Town Minstrel Carnival Association (CTMCA) approached the Western Cape High Court after the permit for its Voorsmakie parade was declined and they failed to secure funding for festive season minstrel events. The entire debacle placed the entire minstrels event in jeopardy.

The R4m allocation was instead handed to the Kaapse Klopse Karnival Assosiasie, despite the CTMCA running the event for the past 19 years. The permit for the Voorsmakie was declined due to non-compliance.

Nicholson said this is the first year that the City finalised the allocation of funding months ahead of the minstrel and choir events.

“It will empower associations to plan better, seek additional funding, and grow more sustainable events in the future,” she added. VOC


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  1. From the Sunan ibn Mājah, Volume V, Book 33, the Arabic Kitāb al-Ādāb, the ‘Book on Ādāb’ (the ‘Book on Etiquette’), Chapter 53, the Chapter called ‘Excellence of Remembrance (of Allāh)’, Ḥadīth Number 3791, translated into English by Muhammad Tufail Anṣārī:
    Abū Huraira and Abū Sa’īd (Allāh Be Pleased with them) used to hold the Holy Prophet (Peace and Blessings of Allāh be upon him) as a witness to the fact that he said, “A people does not sit in a meeting mentioning (the name of) Allāh in it, but the angels surround them, and (Allāh’s) Mercy Covers them, and Tranquillity descends upon them, and Allāh Remembers them among those (angels) who are near Him.”

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