Withdrawal from 8 Mile Event
After much deliberation and with great sadness, Singakwenza has withdrawn from the Midmar Mile in 2021 due to the allegations levelled against the main sponsor, aQuelle. As one of its core objectives, Singakwenza must adopt clear and unequivocal public stances on important social responsibility issues, one of which is the issue of gender based violence. The allegations made against aQuelle relate to issues of gender based violence, which are serious and of great concern to Singakwenza. In order to discharge Singakwenza’s duty to uphold its socially responsibility objectives it has, without attempting to pre-judge or finally determine the matter, made its best efforts to inform itself of all publicly available facts relating to this issue. This process has been undertaken by Singakwenza in full recognition of the fact that these issues will ultimately only be finally determined through formal legal processes. However due the fact that the legal processes that will be followed will in all likelihood take years to be finalised, Singakwenza believes it to be necessary and prudent to consider its current position on this issue in an even-handed and informed manner so as to enable it to adopt an appropriate and timely public position in this regard. Having considered the number of separate complaints levelled against aQuelle and the totality of information presently publicly available, it does appear, at a prima facie level, that these allegations warrant a comprehensive formal investigation. Singakwenza fully respects and supports the following of a proper and due legal process which will ultimately include aQuelle’s right to respond fully to the allegations and to have its voice heard on this issue. Having considered all of the above, Singakwenza has made the prudent and cautious decision to distance itself from any direct or indirect public association with aQuelle until such time as this issue has been fully and finally determined through due legal process.
Singakwenza’s participation in the Midmar Mile 8 Mile Challenge has been an incredibly rewarding one, and this decision was not taken lightly. Our grateful thanks to the Midmar Mile organizers and all the phenomenal people who have been part of our team over the past 6 years and raised a significant amount of money to change the lives of thousands of young children from local Pietermaritzburg communities.