Minister wants pension fund for musicians

Brown Dash, Tebogo “Zombo” Ndlovu, Brenda Fassie and Simon Mahlathini Nkabinde had more in common than just their incredible musical talents: despite their fame and the potential fortune that came with it, they died broke.

Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini told City Press the government’s proposed social security reforms include covering artists so they have a pension despite the sometimes turbulent nature of their fame.

Hawkers, informal entrepreneurs and “whoever else is able at some stage to amass enough money to save for the future” would also be covered as part of this plan, Dlamini said.

She said government was getting involved because there was nothing compulsory in the country that covered these groups.

“My thinking is that, once an artist is at his or her peak, there must be contributions that are made into his or her personal pension.

“We need to plan for the artists because they don’t get permanent jobs and we need to have a programme that is going to cover all of them; they must have a pension.

“You will find that a person rises and becomes a star. But with some of our artists, when they passed away, you found out they had [financial] problems.”

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