President Cyril Ramaphosa has instructed Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa to cancel the 22 million Rand Flagpole Project.
Many citizens were outraged by the cost of the flag and said the money could be put to better use like helping the poor.
Ramaphosa made this announcement during a Black Business Council Meeting on Thursday evening after the flagpole project received massive criticism from the public.
Ramaphosa said Mthethwa called him to ask him what he should do about the flag.
“Mthethwa comes to me and says, President, please tell me when I can call you. I say, Mthethwa, I am in a cabinet committee meeting, we will talk afterwards. I call him back and he says to me, President this flag thing, which is such a wonderful initiative, it seems our people are not happy with it’, and I say, of course they are not happy with it. Cancel this thing,’” Ramaphosa said.
Initially he Minister Mthethwa had defended the project, explaining that his department was entrusted with promoting social cohesion.
Mthethwa later said he had taken note of the public discourse around the issue and that the process would be reviewed.
Accroding to news sources, the feasibility study was expected to cost the taxpayer R5 million while the installation of the 100-metre-long flag will cost R17 million.
Ramaphosa said South Africa has a government that listens to its citizens.
“We listen to our people. We don’t ride roughshod over our people, we listen and Minister Mthethwa was able to say, yes president we will pull this thing and besides that the cost was just too high,” added Ramaphosa.