A Buffalo City Metro council meeting collapsed on Wednesday after a heated debate erupted over an attempt to spend millions of ratepayers’ money on an upcoming boxing tournament.
At the centre of the controversy is former ANC Youth League provincial chairman Ayanda Matiti’s Xaba Boxing Promotions outfit, which was earmarked for a R3.4m handout from the BCM coffers.
The metro’s sports sponsorship committee granted the same company R399,000 for an event that was held on June 17. The committee is allowed to approve funding under R400,000. Any funding above that needs council approval.
The R3.4m was recommended for the upcoming “5th Annual celebrations of Madiba as a Boxer” tournament in the name of Nelson Mandela.
The event is scheduled for Friday in East London.
Matiti had requested R10m from the metro, but the report tabled before council yesterday recommended that the company be granted R3.4m.
Chaos erupted in the council chamber after ANC councillors supported the move to grant Matiti the millions.
In supporting the move, ANC ward 11 councillor Mashwabada Gcilishe stated: “In principle the ANC caucus accepts the recommendation, approves the recommendation subject to the legal scrutiny by our legal unit.
“If there are positive results after that process – which should not take long – then it should be processed as such. Xaba Boxing Promotions should submit a close-out report of the event.”