Caroline Makoni

NATIONAL Arts Council of Zimbabwe (NACZ) Manicaland provincial arts manager, Caroline Makoni says she is optimistic that the cultural creative industries in the province will progress following a decline in COVID-19 infections and deaths.

The latest developments brought relief to the creative sector that has been suffocating from the effects of the long COVID-19-induced lockdown that had turned some of the artists into charity cases.

“The cultural creative industry (CCI) which had been negatively affected by the outbreak of COVID-19 that was followed by a series of lockdowns appears to be fast resurrecting and flourishing,” Makoni told NewsDay Life & Style.

“A National Arts Council of Zimbabwe organised Muchongoyo festival that had taken a sabbatical due to COVID-19 is on the cards.

“The Chimanimani festival will also be happening this year courtesy of community members and other stakeholders.”

Makoni said they were committed to champion the growth of the arts sector, adding that Manicaland province had abundant talent across genres.

“The recently held United Nations International Conference on Culture resolved to push for arts as pillars for development. This recognition by the United Nations goes a long way in showing the importance of the arts in general,” she said.

“I would like to see Manicaland artists participating more on both national and international fora. In Manicaland, the appreciation levels of the arts can be better than it is. It is our sincere hope that the CCI will assume its rightful place alongside other developmental arms of society.”

She added; “We had to set up WhatsApp groups which cater for the seven districts. Our Facebook page, Manicaland Arts~Kumakomoyo has also been very vibrant, but the challenge remains that of getting through to remote areas as most people there cannot afford data.”

“We have award-winning artists here and we want to see more of them penetrating the international markets and earning a meaningful living out of their craft.”

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