Ramaphosa urges citizens to protect, preserve SA’s traditional music

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President Cyril Ramaphosa has urged South Africans to protect and preserve the country’s traditional music.

The President says cultural pride and expression should never be an excuse for chauvinism, tribalism, xenophobia or misogyny.

“There is no part of the heritage of any South African community that permits men to demean women or impose their will on women through violence,” says the President during his address.

Ramaphosa delivered the keynote address at the official National Heritage Day celebrations, at the Union Buildings in Pretoria.

The 2022 Heritage Day theme celebrate the country’s indigenous isicathamiya music and in particular the legacy of Solomon Popoli Linda. The South African composer and musician is famous for the classic hit titled iMbube.

Ramaphosa says the country’s artists should be paid every cent that is due to them. He says what happened to Linda should not happen to other artists in the country.

“Artists must therefore be paid their dues,” says Ramaphosa.

In recent years, the country’s artists held several marches to voice their discontent against government lack of support for their industry.

Ramaphosa has acknowledged that the country’s arts industry has suffered immensely during the COVID-19 lockdown.

He says even today, artists are still taken advantage of.

“Struggling artists are taken advantage of and strong-armed into giving up their rights and their royalties,” adds Ramaphosa.

“Our artists used song and dance to transmit messages most effectively in ways that conventional channels could not. We therefore have a moral responsibility to preserve this music and to protect those who create it,” explains the President.

He has also acknowledged that the country is currently going through several challenges that continue to impact negatively toward the country’s economy.

He says events such as the 2021 July unrest, the KwaZulu-Natal floods, the rising cost of living and the current energy crisis continue to derail the country’s economy growth.

Ramaphosa says government will soon announce measure that will address some of the current challenges.

Below is the video of today’s celebrations:

Minister Mthethwa thanks Ramaphosa

Sport Art and Culture Minister, Nathi Mthethwa has urged citizens to respect and embrace other peoples cultures and to love one another.

He has also emphasised the importance of knowing who we are and where we come from as a nation.

Mthethwa says is through music and dance that people from different walks of life can gather and unite.

The Minister thanked the President for government’s financial assistance during the COVID-19 lockdown.

He says even though the funds couldn’t reach all artists, it has made a huge difference to all those who received the funds.

Mthethwa also paid homage to legendary traditional musician, Linda.

He has urged South Africans to use their cultures and heritage to unite all race groups and help overcome the social ills facing the country.

He says Isicathamiya, played a huge role in the lives of people during apartheid.

Below is the full interview with the Minister:

Support for Ramaphosa

Gauteng Premier David Makhura has taken the opportunity to thank all those who heeded government’s call to gather at the Union Buildings to celebrate this day together.

He has expressed support for Ramaphosa, saying he believes that the President was capable of taking South Africa from where it is now.

Makhura also acknowledged that the country is currently facing serious challenges.

In recent weeks, the President came under serious criticism over Eskom’s rolling blackouts.

South Africans have had to endure endless power cuts as the struggling power utility took to the country to stage four, five and six respectively.

He has urged citizens to embrace other people’s cultures and to unite at all times.

Earlier in the day, a group of Springs Boys High School band, together with other children dressed in their traditional attire, paraded across streets of Pretoria, showcasing their talents and colourful clothes.

Meanwhile, those who attend the celebrations here, are now being entertained by different cultural groups and DJs, as loud speakers continue to play music.

Below is David Makhura’s audio file: