Nacz to deregister errant associations

HARARE – The National Arts Council of Zimbabwe (Nacz) says it will deregister errant and under-performing  arts associations.

Nacz director Elvas Mari told representatives of arts associations during a meeting held in Harare on Thursday that the arts mother body was determined to weed out waywardness and mediocrity in the arts sector.

“Pull up your stockings or risk having your operating licences revoked. The arts sector should experience a noticeable growth and this can only be achieved through hardworking and committed arts associations,” he said.

Mari added that many arts associations were using their registration with Nacz to source money for selfish motives.

“Some associations are moving around sourcing funding using our licences and at the end they are failing to account for that money. Nacz endorsement or brand is not meant for personal gains and as a result, we are going to deregister all under-performing arts associations beginning 2016,” said Mari.

According to Mari, Nacz has lined up an audit of financial books of the associations as a way of determining organisations that should face the axe.

“Auditors will be deployed to check the performance of arts associations in the country hence it is important for organisations operating under Nacz to keep financial books or statements. Associations who fail to comply or meet Nacz’s demands will be deregistered forthwith,” said Mari.

Mari added that the Zimbabwe Union of Musicians (Zum) was an example of an association that was deregistered because its persistent failure to comply with Nacz rules and regulations.

“Deregistering does not mean the affected organisation has to cease operations, but we are saying Nacz will no longer be associated with that particular organisation.

“The process is done to protect our reputation and image though artists can be members of a deregistered association because they will be exercising their right to association. The problem will only arise when something bad happens to them, as the national arts mother body we won’t help or consider them as artists or our members,” he said.

Mari said there are over 70 arts associations operating in Zimbabwe with three quarters of them being based in Harare.

“It is pitiful that the majority of arts associations are based in Harare, but they are failing to restore sanity and order in the sector. Zimdancehall violence erupted at concerts, but arts associations are claiming to exist, what are they doing? They should educate young artistes to desist from that culture.”

The Nacz boss also explained that his organisation does not work directly with the artists on the ground but through associations.

“As the arts mother body, our duty is to deal with macro-problems affecting the arts or culture industry and these include legal frameworks and policy implementations among other duties,” he said.

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