Cosatu backs local artists

2010-03-28 08:02

Johannesburg - The Congress of SA Trade Unions (Cosatu) is supportive of the campaign by local artists to benefit from the Fifa World Cup in South Africa, it said on Sunday.

Spokesperson Patrick Craven said in a statement that the trade union's affiliate, Creative Workers Union of SA (CWUSA), had the right to be angry.

He said this was after artists in the country and around the continent were overlooked by both the 2010 World Cup Local Organising Committee (LOC) and Fifa for the soccer spectacle's pre-concert at Orlando Stadium in Soweto on June 10.

The outrage comes after the likes of Alicia Keys, John Legend, Black Eyed Peas, Amadou & Mariam, Anglique Kidjo, BLK JKS, Juanes, Shakira, The Parlotones, Tinariwen, Vieux Farka Tour and Vusi Mahlasela were announced as the line-up for the concert.


"In particular, it is a scandal that the World Cup concert will feature only three local artists and nine plus from elsewhere," Craven said.

"The federation urges all its members to support CWUSA's rolling mass action at the 2010 World Cup LOC's offices in Nasrec to protest against this plan," he said.

Craven said the trade union shared CWUSA's sentiments that "This [event] is an African World Cup and it's for Africa".

"Creative workers are part and parcel in displaying the rich heritage of our country and continent through their involvement and participation," CWUSA had said after the announcement of artists for the Soweto concert.

80% participation

The union is demanding an 80% participation of South Africa and Africa's creative workers in all 2010 World Cup cultural events, as part of job creation and consolidation of national unity and cohesion agenda.

It also demands that the line-up for the June 10 concert be mainly South African and African artists, and then American international artists.

A 100% local content and programming for the World Cup through radio and television, and a clear cultural programme as part of the legacy spin-off of the 2010 World Cup also formed part of the union's demands.

CWUSA also demands that a publicly sanctioned procurement process of artists and technical personnel in all cultural events, and a temporary union membership for all international artists' prior to them being commissioned and endorsed by the LOC.

Craven called on patriotic South Africans and internationalists to also support CWUSA's campaign "as opposed to hosting a jamboree and looting spree for football's ruling oligarchy".