THE leaking of an internal letter to The Herald and the consequent front page story ("Roland’s head on the block”, July 31) prompts me to provide a factual and objective perspective on this matter:
During the time of the 2010 Fifa World Cup, the communications office commissioned a number of outdoor advertising mediums, following tremendous (justifiable) pressure from our council that not enough was being done to promote and advertise the World Cup properly in the city. Following a near-perfect supply chain management process, various mediums of outdoor advertising went up, including bus shelters, wall mountings, posters (such as in Cape Road), billboards and gantries.
Yes, some of these mediums contravened the bylaw at the time, including many of the posters, the billboards (which are still up) and the gantries. Post-World Cup, the gantries were taken down.
The gantries cost the council nothing. In fact, the council earned a significant amount of money from this: over a three-month period, council received R240000 in cash from gantry advertising, in addition to receiving R200000 in (free) advertising for the Fifa World Cup.
All of this was done for the purposes and benefits of advertising the World Cup and I fully maintain that, under the circumstances, absolutely nothing wrong was done. The World Cup was, by far, the largest ever event that our country has had the privilege and opportunity to host.
Advertising it in splendour was the very least we could do.
For whatever reason, some are seeking to take punitive action a full two years after the fact. However, with all due respect, any reasonable person would know, understand and acknowledge that anyone who was able vigorously to promote and advertise the World Cup, while at the same time earning money for council, should actually be congratulated rather than punished.
Roland Williams, director: communications, NMBM