The DA will appeal against a ruling by the Pretoria High Court that the government may use race as a criterion when awarding financial aid to businesses affected by Covid-19.
The court on Friday rejected the DA’s application for urgent intervention on the government’s criteria according to which the Covid-19 relief fund is allocated. Financial aid is currently being made available to businesses in need of assistance based on black empowerment codes.
The DA argued that the government acted unlawfully by failing to provide clarity on how the aid fund’s criteria would be applied. The DA also considers the criteria illegal because it is determined primarily on the basis of race.
The court ruled that race, gender, age and disability should be included in the criteria.
According to Zakhele Mbhele, the DA’s shadow minister of small business development, the court did find that the government’s criteria for the aid fund were too “vague”. That is why the court has instructed Khumbudzo Ntshavheni, Minister of Small Business, to re-establish the criteria for clarity.
On Monday, Mbhele said the party believes the matter needs urgent review by a higher court.