‘This is unbearable suffering’ – DA calls on NAC to engage picketing artists

Artists have staged a sit-in at the NAC's Joburg offices, demanding answers about a R300 million presidential employment stimulus programme for the sector, which they say was mismanaged.

FILE: South African artists are seeking legal redress over the presidential employment stimulus package. Picture: Veronica Makhoali/Eyewitness News.

JOHANNESBURG – More voices have come out calling on the National Arts Council (NAC) to find a reasonable solution with artists demonstrating at the council's Johannesburg offices.

Artists have been occupying the NAC premises for more than a month now.

They're demanding answers about a R300 million presidential employment stimulus programme for the sector, which they say was mismanaged.

READ: Artists step up calls for Mthethwa to resign over NAC handling of COVID fund

Artists claim the council missed its 31 March deadline to payout the money.

The creatives said they would continue with their picket until their demands are met, this was despite a High Court ruling ordering them to vacate the office.

ALSO READ: Artists vow to continue NAC sit-in despite court order

The Democratic Alliance's (DA) Veronica van Dyk said the NAC should speed up the payments.

“While the understands the pressure the council must be feeling, many of its problems could have been solved had the NAC decided to be transparent with the artists and engaged with them. Many artists have lost their homes, have no food on the table. This is unbearable suffering.”

WATCH: 'People had to pull their kids out of schools' Artists protest over mismanaged R300 million fund

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