South Africa: Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa Vows to Defend Artists' Rights

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South Africa's creative industry is riddled with challenges of inadequate remuneration, abuse of artist's rights, quarrels within the industry and the provisions of the Copyright Amendment Bill. These are some of the many issues raised by artists at the Gauteng Creative Industries Indaba.

According to a 2017 report published by the South African Cultural Observatory (SACO) the creative industry accounts for 2.93% of employment in the country. However, artists still battle to maintain a steady income without having to rely on other sources of income outside the industry.

Opening the Gauteng Creative Industries Indaba at a hotel in Braamfontein, Johannesburg, on Tuesday 23 April, Gauteng Premier David Makhura said:

"Gauteng accounts for 31.5% of all cultural and creative jobs in South Africa, employing close to 180,000 people".

The Indaba is aimed at giving the creative industry -- performers, filmmakers, actors, actresses, visual curators, poets, designers and more -- an opportunity to articulate a blueprint for the industry in Gauteng.

"We work for small change in this industry. If you negotiate an offer, they will replace you with someone. They would rather take those people who settle for any price they are given," said freelance actress Masabatha Matlala.

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