Back to Index
terminates funding to some Zimbabwean arts and culture organisations
March 13, 2006
View audio file details
of CHIPAWO marimba band entertained guests during the function
Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) has
terminated funding to five arts and culture organisations in Zimbabwe
citing Sida's policy of mainstreaming support in all sectors of
The five affected
organisations are Rooftop Promotions, CHIPAWO,
Amakhosi Theatre Productions, Zimbabwe
International Film Festival Trust (ZIFFT) and the Zimbabwe College
of their exit package Sida handed over computer hardware and software
valued at ZWD14 billion. An additional ZWD16 billion has been disbursed
to some of the partner organisations to enable them to implement
their programmes to September 2006.
of the computers and printers handed over to the arts and culture
Harare at the handover function, Swedish Ambassador to Zimbabwe,
Sten Rylander said the termination of funding should not be seen
as a sign that Sweden is abandoning the culture sector. He added
that Sida would be supporting arts and culture through the newly
restructured Zimbabwe Culture Fund Trust. Organizations receiving
exit packages will be eligible to apply to the Culture Fund.
In an interview, Mr Rylander said the restructured Zimbabwe Culture
Fund Trust is a replication of the successful Mfuko
wa Utamaduni, Tanzania Culture Trust Fund which he helped set
up in while he was Ambassador in Tanzania - listen
to audio file
Culture Trust Fund is a result of a joint-effort by the Government
of Sweden and the United Republic of Tanzania in collaboration with
culture stakeholders. The initiative aims at promoting and strengthening
the culture sector in Tanzania.
Mpfunya (centre), Executive Director of ZIFFT chats to Sten
Rylander, Swedish Ambassador to Zimbabwe
termination of funding for the five organisations comes at a time
when Zimbabwe is undergoing a severe economic crisis. Inflation
is now pegged at 782% and the prospects of ordinary Zimbabweans
supporting the arts industry is very low. One artist who declined
to be named said people are more concerned about finding their next
meal rather than spending money on a music CD or going to the theatre.
Chapendama, Sida Programme Officer said a sectorial analysis conducted
two years ago showed that the organisations are in a position to
operate viably. She added that Sida is assisting them with funding
for capacity building workshops to ensure that the mindset of organisations
is changed - listen
to audio file
is one of the most successful theatre organisations in Zimbabwe.
In May 2004, the Censorship Board banned their critically acclaimed
political satire called Super Patriots and Morons.
is a theatre producer with Rooftop Promotions. The renowned actor
said that the exit strategy would not affect their work but on the
contrary it would enhance their operations - listen
to audio file
Sithole from Amakhosi collects their exit package from Swedish
Guzha said Rooftop
is going commercial and is putting a value to their work. He added
that his organisation has set up a department called Creative Native
which makes movies, documentaries and as well as event management.
may be optimistic about the future, Priscilla Sithole from Amakhosi
Theatre Productions said her organisation would be cutting down
on some of their programmes. She said that Amakhosi had tried to
go commercial but their efforts are being hampered by the economic
Over the years
Sweden has supported the cultural sector in Zimbabwe to the tune
of USD2 million each year.
Visit the Kubatana.net
Please credit www.kubatana.net if you make use of material from this website.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License unless stated otherwise.