South African Students Congress

Statement on Higher Education Minister's Hotel Bill!

19 July 2010

We are perturbed and disappointed that the Minister of Higher Education stayed at the Mount Nelson Hotel in Cape Town for fifteen days at an estimated cost of forty thousand. In a society that is riddled by crass materialism and conspicuous consumption, we believe that this is a morality own-goal from the Ministry of Higher Education. Given the furore around the Minister's car, we would have expected the Ministry of Higher Education to know better. We call on the Minister of Higher Education to take a more hands-on approach on matters which could be later abused by opportunists to score cheap political points.

We are convinced that there are forces that seek to tarnish the Minister of Higher Education on the basis of his left credentials, but the existence of a rightwing conspiracy does not absolve the Ministry of wrongdoing. We also condemn the sensationalist reporting from The Star that seeks to portray mistakes by the Ministry of Higher Education as though its mistakes committed by the SACP.

We are disgusted that the Department of Public works, once more, has dragged its feet in ensuring that Ministers receive houses in Cape Town such that the Minister of Higher Education would have to opt for Hotels whilst on duty in Cape Town. We call on the Department of Public works to use the same energy we witnessed during the World Cup to provide basic needs for Ministers on time. In the same vein, the Ministry of Higher Education should have fought tooth and nail with Public Works in order to secure accommodation for the Minister because the stay in Hotels was bound to cause embarrassment.

For details Contact:

Mbulelo Mandlana (President)
071 879 3408
Lazola Ndamase (Secretary General)
082 679 8718