Over E900 000 was col­lected dur­ing din­ner - Masiko

Sunday Observer - - NEWS -

Ac­cord­ing to the or­gan­iser of the din­ner, Masiko Dlamini, who was ap­pointed Chair­man of the com­mit­tee that was es­tab­lished in 2014 to work with the min­istry in mo­bil­is­ing funds and op­er­a­tional­is­ing the fund, the money that was pledged and col­lected on the night of the din­ner was over E900 000.

Dlamini, who is also a Manzini based busi­ness­man, said the min­istry was re­spon­si­ble for col­lect­ing the money that was do­nated and pledged by the Manzini busi­ness com­mu­nity and Their Majesties. “The King pledged E300 000 while the Queen Mother promised about E200 000. The busines s c om­mu­nity t oget her wit h Emazinyane pledged about E400 000. We went to the King to thank the gift af­ter­wards and the min­istry re­ported that it had al­ready col­lected over E200 000 from the pledges.

We were of the idea that these funds were go­ing to be loaned to the street ven­dors but the King said that the money should be used for a projects such as a com­mer­cial struc­ture where all the ven­dors could be ac­com­mo­dated,” he said Sim­i­lar sen­ti­ments were shared by the then min­is­ter of com­merce in­dus­try and trade Gideon Dlamini, who said Their Majesties’ con­tri­bu­tions alone amounted to half a mil­lion.

Pledges

“The pledges from roy­alty amounted to E500 000 be­cause the Queen Mother Indlovukazi pledged E200 000 while the King pledged E300 000 and they promised to con­trib­ute once the fund had been for­malised and

ac­tive. I am not sure how much we col­lected from the busi­ness com­mu­nity but we opened a bank ac­count, where we de­posited it. Some of those who had pledged had not sub­mit­ted the money. Cab­i­net had in­structed that an or­gan­i­sa­tion be es­tab­lished and reg­is­tered. I’m not sure whether it was reg­is­tered or not,” said the former min­is­ter.

Dlamini (Masiko) said they were hin­dered by the min­istry from pro­ceed­ing with their man­date and could not re­port to Their Majesties as they were told they needed to be gazetted to ac­cess the funds. He added that the com­mit­tee was reap­pointed to of­fice and its new Chair­man is Phile­mon Mnisi. He said they had com­plied a strate­gic plan on the project that is to be con­structed for the in­for­mal traders, which is yet to be sub­mit­ted to the King. Mnisi when called said the former chair­man was the right per­son to talk to re­gard­ing the mat­ter, stat­ing that he was en­gaged in some meet­ings.

Masiko Dlamini said the King had or­dered the com­mit­tee in col­lab­o­ra­tion with the min­istry of com­merce in­dus­try and trade to re­port on progress on their task on a monthly ba­sis.

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