By Takunda Chimwaka
Government has reaffirmed its position to promote and support the Music and Arts industry in Zimbabwe citing that it can contribute to the country’s GDP, Harare post reports.
Speaking during the official launch of the National Arts, Culture and Heritage Policy document crafted during the Music and Arts Conference held in Bulawayo from 27 to 30 November 2019 under the theme ‘Promoting ease of Doing Business in Creative Cultural Industry (CCI),’ President Emmerson Mnangagwa recognised the potential role which can be played by the Music and Arts industry in turning around the economy.
“Government will ensure growth of the CCI by financially supporting the industry. We comment the young people in the industry who have stood up for their voices to be heard. I will direct that a Youth Desk responsible for arts and music be created in the Ministry of Youth, Sports, Culture and Recreation,” said the President.
President Mnangagwa further directed that the duty free importation of music and arts equipment be effected. He further acknowledged that there is need to expand CCI creative centres.
Commenting on the decentralisation of services, President Mnangagwa told delegates that the Government was already implementing devolution as enshrined in the Constitution. To that effect he maintained that the long and tiring process of clearing artists will be done at provincial levels.
Speaking at the same event, Minister of Youth, Sports, Culture and Recreation, Kirtsy Coventry applauded the youths in the industry for coming up with brilliant ideas in promoting their industry. She pledged that the ministry would support towards arts and music.
“The ideas brought forward were brilliant and l pledge that my Ministry will be working fully to capacitate the industry. South African music industry generates over 75% of the country’s GDP and so as Zimbabwe, we can still do the same,” said Minister Coventry.
In an interview with this publication, a Bulawayo based artist and dancer, Desire Moyo applauded the Government particularly the First Lady Amai Auxillia Mnangagwa for coming up with the initiative to support the music and arts industry.
“This is an honour to us artists because finally our voice has been heard. The opportunity is not only going to enhance our talents but also allow us to earn a living and promote employment creation. Bulawayo is a hub of cultural industry and we hope to put the country on cultural map globally,” reiterated Moyo.
Youths in Music and Arts industry converged in Bulawayo to discuss the issues affecting their social careers which they presented to President Mnangagwa for further consideration by the Government.