South African Government Unveils 13 Million Rand Statue Amid COVID-19 Pandemic
The South African government has been met with public outrage after it unveiled a 13 million Rand national statue of anti-Apartheid veteran O.R. Tambo during a pandemic that has already resulted in considerable job losses.
The South African government has unveiled a new statue of South African struggle stalwart Oliver Reginald Tambo and it has caused public outrage. According to EWN, President Cyril Ramaphosa unveiled the 13 million Rand statue yesterday right next to O.R. Tambo International airport. Public criticism over the exorbitant expenditure and the fact that the statue is aesthetically disappointing had the official unveiling trending on Twitter. The outrage is warranted with South Africa's current youth unemployment rate reportedly standing at just over 52 percent. Additionally, a number of government officials are reportedly facing corruption charges for alleged collusion in billions worth of missing COVID-19 funds. President Ramaphosa's speech implied that the statue is a strategy to bring in funds as an international tourist attraction.
It is therefore most fitting that this statue has been erected here at this airport that bears his name, and that i… https://t.co/8cHdzjs1Eb— Cyril Ramaphosa 🇿🇦 #StaySafe (@Cyril Ramaphosa 🇿🇦 #StaySafe) 1603780085.0
The statue reportedly stands at nine meters tall and holds the Freedom Charter in one hand. The Freedom Charter is the ruling African National Congress (ANC)'s cornerstone document and was historically adopted in 1955. Tambo was one of Nelson Mandela's closest friends and together with Walter Sisulu, founded the ruling party's ANC Youth League. While the beginnings of the ANC honoured the South African youth, the unveiling of this statue has polarised the very group that the ANC is dependant on for votes. South Africans have expressed that this statue is admittedly a slap in the face of youth who did not even receive the government's meagre COVID-19 relief stimulus of R350 per month.
President Ramaphosa also revealed during his speech that the erection of the statue was the culmination of a project that began in 2006 with an amount of 30 million Rand, according to PowerFM. Furthermore, a mall costing over four billion Rand is set to be built in close proximity to the location of the statue.
Black Twitter did not hold back from lambasting the South African government about their unnecessary and pricey misstep.
“O.R TAMBO REMEMBERED” as if the gent don’t have a whole international airport named after him https://t.co/RulmIX8W5e— YT: Queen Finxa 📹 (@YT: Queen Finxa 📹) 1603868024.0
O.R Tambo’s statue cost R13 million?? & the tender was worth R30 million? There’s plenty of money for everything i… https://t.co/1d7xQDc2aR— BIG SEXY 🇧🇪 (@BIG SEXY 🇧🇪) 1603811436.0
Brace yourselves for another #ORTamboStatue in a few years. The youth of the country of #ORTambo is unemployed an… https://t.co/k9FtvaVmiS— Coceka Mfundisi (@Coceka Mfundisi) 1603807645.0
@MbalulaFikile With a country that's has the highest unemployment rate, poor communities with lack of service deliv… https://t.co/tgRng7TBX3— Pride Malele🇨🇩 (@Pride Malele🇨🇩) 1603821445.0
@Pride_Hilfiger @MbalulaFikile We were never a priority to the ANC.— IG: @zela_fynn (@IG: @zela_fynn) 1603860340.0
13 million Zuid Afrikanse Rand on a statue... Hhayi bandla, SA is a movie— IG: lethubuhlehlongwane (@IG: lethubuhlehlongwane) 1603871894.0
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