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eThekwini won't reveal Babes and Nasty C breakfast bill

By Nathi Olifant | 2017-06-14 08:15:59.0

The eThekwini Municipality has refused to say whether it was contributing financially for a breakfast event on Wednesday‚ where two of the country’s top artists will be honoured before they jet off to America.

Mayor Zandile Gumede will host the event for award-winning rapper Nasty C and kwaito sensation Babes Wodumo at the Moses Mabhida Stadium. The Durban-born musicians were nominated in the global Black Entertainment (BET) Awards in the US.

Durban Tourism boss Phillip Sithole‚ whose unit organised the breakfast‚ would only say it was a partnership with the brands of Nasty C and Babes Wodumo. When it came to how much it was costing ratepayers‚ he was mum.

Sithole said the nomination of the Juice Back and Wololo hitmakers by BET went beyond a recognition that will elevate their careers but also speaks to the overall economic development agenda of Durban.

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“We have had many partnerships with local artists and brands who have become global brands. Examples include our partnership with the Grammy Award-winning Ladysmith Black Mambazo and the Sharks rugby team. These are examples of two local brands who continue to fly the Durban flag high through their trade‚” he said.

Sithole said that having Durban ambassadors making an impact on the international stage meant that the city’s brand would be enhanced globally and help drive conversions around the city.

Most importantly‚ he said‚ the USA was one of Durban’s key source markets in terms of inbound tourists — and the breakfast‚ therefore‚ spoke directly to the objectives of Durban’s visitor marketing strategy.

“We have seen from past experiences that events tourism is a lucrative space. Having a vibrant entertainment industry in Durban directly feeds into a booming tourism and hospitality economy. This is in response to a call by national government to invest in ‘low-hanging fruits’ like the tourism and hospitality sector in order to grow our economies. This is due to the fact that this sector has a direct and immediate impact into growing the economy‚” explained Sithole.

He said over the years Durban Tourism has managed to generate billions of rand in revenue for the economy of the city through events and strategic partnerships.

Previously‚ it emerged that eThekwini contributed thousands of rands to the funeral of Big Nuz member Sibusiso Khomo‚ known by his stage name R Mashesha‚ who died in August 2015.