Actress Linda Sebezo denied relief fund: ‘I have to rely on my mother’s pension to put food on the table’

Isibaya actress Linda Sebezo (PHOTO:GETTY IMAGES)
Isibaya actress Linda Sebezo (PHOTO:GETTY IMAGES)

Veteran actress Linda Sebezo has expressed her disappointment at the way the government is treating artists during these trying times.

On 25 March minister of sports, arts and culture Nathi Mthethwa announced a R150 million relief fund for those who fall under his department to apply for financial assistance.

Read more: Zikhona Sodlaka on artists struggling during lockdown: “Freelancers are starving”

The actress, known for her roles in hit TV shows such as Isibaya and Lockdown, said her application for a relief grant from the department was declined as she doesn’t qualify. She said this is unfair because as a freelancer she only gets paid when she works. Since there’s a nationwide lockdown she can’t work and is making no money to care for her family.

“I’m so disappointed by the minister of Arts&Culture. Artists are some of the people that are hardest hit by this lockdown, we are told that we don’t qualify for the relief funding, where are we supposed to go, what are we supposed to eat. We are expected to provide for our families from empty pockets. We are taxpayers, contributing 25% to tax yet the government is still not able to assist us [sic],” she posted on Twitter.

The actress said things are so dire that she’s had to turn to the kindness of others to get by during the lockdown. She pointed out that bills such as school fees still have to be paid.


“We still getting calls for school fees to be paid. I have to rely on my mother’s pension to put food on the table, such a sad reality [sic],” she wrote.

Linda said she feels let down by the government and finds this kind of treatment unfair.

Linda is part of a number of celebs who have been highlighting the plight of artists during this difficult time.

Recently actress Zikhona Sodlaka shared a video on Instagram, pleading to those who can help to assist freelancers and artists in this trying time.

In a statement the minister said most of the applicants did not meet the basic requirements as stipulated in the criteria for application.

“This ranges from lack of proof of cancellation of events to outstanding basic personal information, et al,” he said in a statement.

He pointed out this was a major concern for his office.

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