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Bot50 Celebrations Expose Sorry State of Our Performing Industry

MONITOR EDITOR
As Botswana celebrates Bot50 with the performing arts at the forefront of these activities, it was under normal circumstances supposed to be a time of merry for the local performing arts industry.

At no other time had there been so much commitment by government or private sector to deliberately channel the funds to the local performing arts industry in the various forms to perform in the various districts, special occasions, road shows, and the main event those climax will be at the national stadium.

However it has been weeping, complaints, as every artist cries for their share of the pie. If it is not an artist complaining, it is a promoter, a DJ, queuing at the Minister’s office to demand his or her share of Bot50.

In short, what has been a splendid effort to encourage and grow our performing arts seems to have arrived at a time when the industry is in such a lull, the pie seems to be too small for the hungry lot.

Perhaps everybody can learn from the Bot50

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experience and realise that deliberate efforts like splashing P100 million into the performing arts industry to grow them should not just be viewed as special occasions, rather exercises like this should be a common cause, just as government deliberately stimulates certain industries every year through budget allocation.

Perhaps it is time development budget planners include the performing arts industry just as they consider industries such as the construction, textile, to name a few, during budget planning.

This should not be seen in anyway to belittle efforts of the Bot50 to empower the local performing arts industry.

Indeed the ongoing efforts as well as positive response to the endless queries are most welcome.

It has given the performing arts industry a rare opportunity to survive, and future similar endeavours would go a long way in creating a sustainable local performing arts industry.



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