Covid-19: Minister defends denying non-BEE companies relief funds

Covid-19: Minister defends denying non-BEE companies relief funds

- Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane has defended the Tourism Department's Covid-19 relief fund

- This after the court challenge to lift the BEE requirements failed and was dismissed

- Kubayi-Ngubane is adamant non-compliant companies had only themselves to blame for being excluded

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Tourism Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane has clapped back at criticism over the department's BEE criteria for businesses to access Covid-19 relief.

Facing backlash over the decision to exclude non-compliant companies as well as a failed lawsuit, the minister is sticking to her guns.

Briefly.co.za reported that AfriForum and Solidarity had challenged the criterion, adamant that relief amid the current economic crisis should not be dished out on the basis of race.

The South African reports that Democratic Alliance MP Hildegard Boshoff accused the department of playing the 'race card'.

READ ALSO: Covid-19: AfriForum, Solidarity lose bid to remove BEE relief criteria

In response to this scathing accusation, Kubayi-Ngubane highlighted 'three hundred years of discrimination' as the main reason for the BEE policies.

The minister argued that 'white compatriots' who had not ensured their companies were BEE compliant had ignored SA law and had therefore only themselves to blame for their exclusion.

“The policy says that if you are a small business, in terms of the categories that we have put, you qualify to be exempted. The question we must ask [is] why our fellow white compatriots, South Africans, felt that they could ignore the laws of this country.”

Commenting on the situation, Solidarity CEO Dirk Hermann had explained that everyone was in a pinch at the moment.

“We’re saying that a disastrous situation like this, where everyone is actually affected, we must help on the basis of your need and not the basis of your skin.”

The DA has also taken a dim view of the criteria, adamant that it was unconstitutional to apply racial restrictions when it came to disaster relief.

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Source: Briefly.co.za

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