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Preparations to go ahead for festival

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“We have started with the logistical planning because time is of the essence. Nothing will deter us from going ahead.”

THE JOINT venture appointed to host the Diamonds and Dorings music festival is going ahead with its preparations for the event, despite the ANC on Tuesday announcing that it would be cancelled.

The Office of the Mayor could not be reached for comment regarding a decision that was apparently taken yesterday by the mayoral committee to implement the ANC’s instruction to cancel the festival.

The 50/50 joint venture, between Investong and The Hive Entertainment, was appointed as the successful bidder last week by the Sol Plaatje Municipality.

A competitive local bidder, Wydex Events Promotions, indicated yesterday that it would be taking legal action against the municipality for a flawed procurement process, where a service provider was appointed during the 14-day window period in which an objection was lodged regarding the appointment.

The CEO of The Hive Entertainment, Clynton ‘Bizzy B’ Clarke, meanwhile stated that they were not given any official notice of the cancellation.

“Should this happen, we will have no other choice but to take legal action for breach of contract. It will not be good for the festival to be cancelled for a second year in a row. We were engaged with meetings for most of yesterday to deal with the issue of individuals who are trying to derail the event,” said Clarke yesterday.

He stated that they could not postpone their arrangements any longer, as a festival of this magnitude required about two months of planning, prior to the event.

“We have started with the logistical planning because time is of the essence. Nothing will deter us from going ahead.

“We are in the process of securing a line-up of local, national and possible international artists. In order to book artists, we are required to make upfront payments. Artists generally charge more for last-minute bookings. We will lose potential donors and if the event is cancelled, sponsors will be hesitant to provide funding for future events and we will lose deposits paid to artists.”

Clarke pointed out that the festival was meant for the people and not for the self-enrichment of individuals.

“It saddens, disappoints and disgusts me that something that could bring about a difference in people’s lives is being jeopardised by greedy and self-entitled individuals.”

He indicated that his company was 100 percent locally owned.

“The Frances Baard Business Forum does not represent or acknowledge me. They have gone as far as to lobby my own party (the ANC) against me with threats that are clearly unconstitutional.

“As a proud Kimberlite and Northern Cape citizen, am I now regarded as an outcast?

“All of this makes no sense and can only bring me to one question, have I become the victim of a racially-motivated and discriminatory attack?”