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EFF promises to build recording studios for artists in every municipality



The EFF has also promised to establish a state non-profit music distribution and production company by 2026.

Echoing what Sport, Arts and Culture Minister Zizi Kodwa has promised after Zahara’s passing, the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) have pledged to build recording studios for artists in every municipality.

There are 257 municipalities in South Africa, comprising eight metropolitan, 44 districts and 205 local municipalities.

The promise to build the studios is part of the EFF’s plan of action in its manifesto, which was launched at the party’s rally in Moses Mabhida Stadium in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) on Saturday.

ALSO READ: ‘It was a black story rather than a political one’- iPhupho L’ka Biko on performing at EFF rally

In December, Kodwa spoke about ways in which artists can avoid being exploited by record companies.

“Few years ago, I was not even in government at that time, we had to build what’s now called Afrotainment in Durban,” said the Minister at Zahara’s send-off.

“As a consequence of that most musicians from the area of Durban they don’t have to go by force to Gauteng it is by choice. We must make that opportunity in the Eastern Cape so that artists like her don’t have to go to Johannesburg, some of them get exploited by record labels.”

EFF’s plan of action

The political party’s plan of action for the sport, arts and culture sector speaks to issues that artists, activists and athletes have complained about for years.

“The EFF government will deal decisively with payola and impose harsh sentences on those found to have participated in the act of paying bribes to radio DJs to play their music” is one of the points under the things the EFF wants to correct in the music industry.

At the 2017 Metro FM Awards, the late Riky Rick shone the spotlight on how payola-the paying of bribes to producers, DJs or music compliers at radio stations by artists and or record companies, to play their music on air.

RELATED: SA music industry: Who really gets the randelas?

In his speech at the time, Riky labelled 90% of the music on radio as “garbage”.

“The EFF government will require radio stations to play a minimum of 85% African content by 2026,” read one of the many points in the party’s manifesto.

Among the other policies the party wants to implement once in power, the EFF states its government will establish a state non-profit music distribution and production company by 2026.

“Which local artists can use to produce and distribute their music. This company will also provide legal services to artists to reclaim ownership of their material from record companies.”

For the culture

For the whole creative and cultural sector, the EFF wants to empower black authors, with more emphasis on female writers.

“The EFF government will establish a fund to support all African writers, particularly women, by 2025.”

With Makhdzi being ridiculed for not being able to speak “good English”, something which Dr Nhlanhla Mpofu, chair of the department of curriculum studies and an associate professor in language education at Stellenbosch University, said reflects a troubling reality and internalised negativity towards our own cultural identity.

READ MORE: Radio veteran Linda ‘Mr Magic’ Sibiya joins the EFF

The EFF government plans to turn the Pan South African Language Board (PanSALB) into a chapter 9 institution in terms of the Constitution to support democracy with a budget to develop all indigenous languages.

“The EFF government will develop criteria to be followed in the selection of books written and published by local authors to be procured and placed in libraries across the country.”

The party plans to build a library in every ward by 2027.

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