By Staff Reporter
QWAQWA – This November 1, registered citizens will be going to their designated voting stations to cast their vote. While artists of Maluti – a – Phofung (MAP) on the other hand are planning a sit in at the Free State department of sport, arts, culture, and recreation centre, saying down with management.
Bularah Chopo an art practitioner in MAP says that he has a grave concern, that the management of the Free State department of sport, arts, culture, and recreation have done nothing for local artists since its inception. “I urge all the artists in MAP to join me for a sit in at the centre to show our dissatisfaction with the poor service delivery from this department of the ANC government,” Bularah said. This plea comes on the back of local business leader Thite Titi and other business owners taking to the streets, social media and talking to the media saying that MAP residents must use their vote wisely.
According to Chopo and other artists, assistant director at the centre Ntsane Mopeli is not working towards seeing that the vision of the department is a reality. “I am a visual artist who has been going to the centre for several years now and have received no assistance at all,” Lucky said. Lucky is an independent artist skilled in photography, he says that the people who are given opportunities by the department seem to be a small group of individuals, he goes further to say that every time he goes to the centre, he is asked to enter his details into the database, but the department has never even once contacted him. Thabo a fellow photographer said, “I used to go to the centre seeking assistance, but nothing came of it. All that I noticed was that the same people seem to be getting the opportunities from this department.”
The centre next to Boitsebelo Technical School is a branch of the Thabo Mofutsanyana District Municipality (TMDM), which serves more than residents of MAP. The vision of the Free State department of sport, arts, culture, and recreation is to champion social transformation through a mission that fosters constitutional values, promoting equal opportunities, inclusion, redress, promoting social cohesion, promoting active citizenry and to foster social compacts. Their services include arts and culture, museum and heritage services, library and archive services and sport and recreation.
Lehlohonolo Mabaso a very vocal and outspoken performing artist and poet, who was invited to perform at the Poetry Africa virtual stage on October 16 this year said this to The Guard, “I stand in solidarity with local businesses when they say that people must use their vote wisely. Qwaqwa has suffered a lot at the hands of the ANC led government and what more about the artists, to the politicians we do not exist. I am in support of the sit in and am in the foreground.”