MEC Hlophe and Artists reach agreement on Phase 2 of the Relief Fund
MEC for Sport, Arts, Culture and Recreation Ms Mbali Hlophe called for an urgent virtual meeting with stakeholders in the arts fraternity this afternoon following an audio clip that was circulating raising grievances and concerns over implementation of the relief fund which was followed by an email from SAACYF Gauteng and other organizations in the sector.
This comes as the MEC is on a weeklong drive throughout the province encouraging individuals within the sport, arts, culture and recreation sector to apply for the second wave of the relief fund.
Concerns and grievances raised by artists included:
• outstanding payments to successful applicants for the first phase of the relief funds
• the list of organizations and individuals awarded
The MEC explained the process undertaken and further highlighted the fact that the department had to comply with government regulations in the disbursement of funds including verification of the award process by auditors.
The meeting resolved on a number of issues aimed at addressing a stalemate on progress regarding the first phase of the relief funds:
1. That the department will work closely with the structures in the arts sector on matters of mutual interest
2. The art sector to assist the department with mobilization of artists to attend the roadshows
3. The department will effect payments to qualifying beneficiaries of the first phase upon finalization of all processes
4. A follow up meeting to be held with the department before month end to discuss the Grants in aid and Online applications
The second phase is earmarked for individuals running programmes within the sector of sport, arts, culture and creative industries, also targeting those at local and community levels.
“I am happy about the outcome of our meeting, it brought to the fore the urgency within which the matters in this sector should be addressed” says MEC Hlophe
“Working with stakeholders in the sector, we will simplify the process, enable and facilitate wider reach and access without in anyway or whatsoever flauting government regulations” she concluded.
“The Cultural and Creative Industries Federation of SA (CCIFSA) Gauteng appreciates the swift response of the MEC and her team in dealing with the concerns raised by the artists” says Lesiba Mothoa, the Gauteng Provincial Coordinator” We believe that the DSACR leadership team brought by the MEC to meet artist leaders responded adequately to the challenges presented by the creatives and mad firm commitments to resolve most of the critical concerns.
“We therefore support the drive by the MEC with the support of other sector leaders and organisatios to go into Gauteng regions to ensure that more artists are assisted with all the information needed to ensure that they access the funds allocated for the 2nd Covid -19 Relief funding” he concluded.
Source: Government of South Africa