1. The City needs to do more to assist small business
This is the key to unlocking our own economic potential, creating jobs and wealth.
Munier went to the Maynardville Garden Market in Wynberg last weekend.
It was a big, well-attended craft and food festival, which drew even more people who had come for the Diversity Cultural Food Festival.
You see, the latter decided to piggyback on the Maynardville market after their event permit application was cancelled.
What the problem there was, Munier doesn’t quite know.
Anyway, it was all fun and festive at the market on Saturday afternoon until the authorities stepped in.
According to rangers and City officials on site, the market structures were not compliant, there were gas and electrical issues, which meant the kids’ play zone had to be shut down and jumping castles deflated.
Entrances for vehicles were closed, meaning people arriving had to park in the street, and those leaving struggled to get out.
This caused consternation for those at the market and word of all the drama spread on social media, which turned off event-goers.
Event organisers squabbled over the compliance issues with officials, who warned that the two-day market would be shut down on the Sunday.
It got ugly, with angry patrons quick to blame certain political and racial - even religious - agendas.
Anyway, Munier decided to open his groot bek to get to the bottom of the matter and try to find a solution.
The following morning, the City’s director of Safety and Security, Richard Bosman, announced that the market would be permitted to operate.
After some engagements, he said, they came to an “acceptable compromise” and the market would be up and running and trading from 12pm to 7pm.
The City’s mayoral committee member for safety and security, JP Smith, also personally called Munier to say the City had made a few concessions and compromises to keep traders and customers happy.
Well done. That was the right approach.
Yes, safety compliance for public events is of primary importance, but the authorities’ first response should not be “Shut it down!”
It should be: “How can we assist you to be compliant? How can we make it easier for you?”
It’s a win-win approach - for event organisers, the City, business and consumers.
2. The second present Munier would like to see under his Christmas tree is: more Anti-Gang Unit cops, kanala.
Can we just pause for a moment to give these guys a round of applause?
Since Police Minister Bheki Cele’s announcement of the deployment of the AGU a couple of months ago, gang-infested communities are already seeing the results.
Community Police Forums have noted a drop in shooting incidents, and the media has reported more arrests than usual in this period.
Well done to SAPS. Thanks for making the communities a bit safer. But please also focus on our local businesses (for reasons stated above) and our schools.
Have a safe and blessed Christmas, mense.