Open letter to South Africa’s students‚ universities and government‚ represented by Minister in the .
FORMER Trompies member and now a top civil servant in President Jacob Zuma's government, Eugene Mthethwa, has joined the ranks of those complaining about the Fifa World Cup Eve Concert scheduled for Orlando Stadium in Soweto.
The gig on June 10 will feature, among others, local artists The Parlotones and Vusi Mahlasela, but the line up is made up of mainly American artists, with a few African artists such as Angelique Kidjo.
Mthethwa, who is acting director: stakeholder relations in the presidency, has said the views he was expressing were his as a former artist, and not those of his current employer.
He accused the South African music industry of being unimaginative, waiting until the line up of the Fifa World Cup had been completed before complaining, instead of being proactive.
"It is sad. Four years ago I said this type of thing would happen. I predicted and fought against the inevitable dominance of Sony American artists during 2010 events. Many condemned me instead of supporting the cause and now their fingers are burning. I am convinced that the cultural industry lacks leadership. There is a vacuum that will probably be filled by our third generation as our second generation has gone astray and is consumed by drugs and Eurocentric beats that seek to devalue the Afro-centric sounds that characterised Paul Simon's music.
"The sad part of the last-minute fight that they are putting up through the media is that it cannot change contracts signed by Fifa and those musicians."
Said Mzwakhe Mbuli: "I thought Africa was the host of the 2010 World Cup, but I got it wrong. The Eurocentric Americanised line up undermines Africa's musical genius and intelligence. SA Grammy recipients have been excluded. This is an insult to the late Miriam Makeba's legacy."