9 January 2013

Tanzania: Artistes Look for Ways to Attend February's EAC Festival

REQUESTS to participate in next month's EAC Arts and Culture Festival in Rwanda (JAMAFEST) have started reaching its local organizers.

This was confirmed by the Senior Cultural Officer in the Ministry of Information, Youth, Culture and Sports (MIYCS), Habibu Msammy. Through a telephone conversation he expressed his pleasure to have had such a positive response within a couple of days of sending out a call to local artistes to participate in the event.

He had officially presented news of the event to the arts fraternity, including their stakeholders, on Monday's at the National Arts Council's Jukwa la Sanaa discussion there and told the 'Daily News' yesterday, a number of Dar es Salaam-based artistes have contacted his offices with their request to participate in the event, set to star on February 9.

Prior to this, there was an announcement to cultural officers a couple weeks ago from which the Ministry had received requests from artistes in three regions: Mwanza, Dodoma and Kilimanjaro, to participate in the festival.

However, Msammy was not willing to divulge their names as yet, until the process had to accommodate them had been completed. What he was willing to say was that his department had helped a number of artistes, who asked for assistance with their application.

"There are those artistes, who have come asking for us to help them put together letters of introduction, which they intend taking to individuals or companies, with the hope of securing sponsorship so that they can attend the festival.

This we've done without any hesitation but we're not in the position ourselves to provide such assistance," the Senior Cultural Officer explained. During the short conversation he repeated more than once that the main idea on which this festival is based is for all participating artistes to provide their own means of up-keep while in Rwanda and their travel expenses both to and from Rwanda next month.

In the odd case when they at the ministry might feel like helping an individual or group cover some of these expenses, a process would have to be followed, which involves sending letters to the respective persons within the ministry.

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