02 September 2020 - NW1828
Madlingozi, Mr BS to ask the Minister of Sports, Arts and Culture
1). What (a) total amount of the funds earmarked to provide relief to artists who are suffering as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic has been disbursed to artists and (b) percentage of the specified funds have been allocated to artists based in rural areas; (2). whether there have been any delays in disbursing the funds; if so, what (a) are the reasons for such delays and (b) steps will he take to ensure that everyone who needs the funds will receive such?
(1). The COVID -19 Relief Fund close-out report has not been completed due to the fact that the Appeals Committee has not concluded on all appeals applications. Upon conclusion and reconciliation of the Relief Fund processes a full report will be shared with the Portfolio Committee.
However, as of the end of July 2020, the Department had disbursed 3120 (three thousand, one hundred and twenty) payments to approved beneficiaries to the sum of R63 million.
The Department will be able to provide a detailed report on the Relief Fund upon completion of all processes.
(2). A number of challenges were experienced which contributed to delays in disbursing funds to approved beneficiaries, both individuals (artists and athletes).
• A new online application systems was used and it necessitated training for official assigned to use the system
• Disbursement of funds were facilitated through agencies Business Arts South Africa (BASA) and the National Film and Video Foundation (NFVF). The two agencies had to tailor-made their operations for disbursement of funds based on the Relief Fund criteria.
• The various independent committees appointed (Adjudication, Appeals Committees) had to be boarded and trained to use the online application and this also contributed to the delay.