Sowetans to benefit from Gauteng Carnival jamboree!

The Gauteng Carnival- Pale Ya Rona- which loosely translated means telling our stories, folklore and embracing various cultures.

With close to 90 schools performing, dancing and gyrating for festival lovers, they will be doing this as part mass participation from all over the province, although the MEC for Arts, Culture and Sport Lebogang Maile was not impressed with the number of schools entered.

“We have almost 2000 schools in Gauteng and only 90 will be taking part is unacceptable,” he says.

The budget for the GC is estimated to be in the region of R12m, but according to MEC this should be increased should they have buy in from other private sectors and local businesses in the future.

GC is done in partnership with GDE and other noble sponsors.

Posed to him what was the initial plan to conscientious locals to come on board, Maile minced no words and said, they were not consulted as a result of time.

“Due to oversight and time constraints we did not engage intensively because it would have made sense to have them on board. The kind of budget we have is limited. However, we will be meeting some of local businesses during this year’s event.”

The GC programme has been shortened from original three days to two. This according to the organizers, would help in proper planning and efficiency of the event. A total of 15 000 participants have been confirmed and 62 artists are working on costumes at Cleveland and Sebokeng base camps, respectively.

Although no figures were given on how big and what challenges were experienced in the past, one thing remaining though is some of SADC states have shown vast interest in participating and sharing their culture with fellow South Africans.

The growth and sustainability of the Pale Ya Rona and as part ‘Mzansi’s Golden Economy’ project has also drawn in the Democractic Republic of Congo, who have assured the organizers, will teach us a thing or two when coming to African dance.

This forms a partnership SA has forged with the DRC state on bilateral understandings.

 “Apart from the excitement and euphoria this brings, it also acts as catalyst to the xenophobic attacks which has gripped this country. We hope by the end this two-day fest, we will be able to live in Peace with our fellow brothers and sisters,” says Maile.

Our business model projects that in year’s to come, we shall have invested over R30m in this project, said Maile.

Future entrepreneurs and thousand jobs either directly or indirectly, will be created during this year’s fest.

Various prizes for outstanding Carnival troupe participants who amongst others design 80’s cool costumes and public Best Dressed Man and Woman stand a chance to win monetary prizes ranging from R50,000, R30,000, R20 000 and R10,000, respectively.

30 giant puppets, stilt walkers and provincial troupe made up of Greek, Italians, Tami, Portuguese, and Dj’s will entertain the revelers. It’s FREE, MAHALA…

On the subject of tourists expected, Maile promised to work in tandem with both Gauteng and Soweto Tourism agencies to quantify the numbers anticipated.  

For more information call 27 11 355 2500 or http://www.gautengcarnival.co.za 

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